Nyeri County Assembly report reveals sorry state of Karatina Level Five Hospital

Monday March 21 2016

Visiting time at the  Karatina Level Five

Visiting time at the Karatina Level Five Hospital. A report from the Nyeri County Assembly paints a sorry state of the hospital with beds having broken down and the available ones rusting. PHOTO | JOSEPH KANYI | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

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Most of the beds at the Karatina Level Five Hospital have broken down and the available ones are rusting, a report tabled in the Nyeri County Assembly says.

According to the report most of the wards do not have enough beds.

The male orthopaedic unit, for instance, is congested, forcing patients to be housed in other wards.

“Ward Five, which is a male ward, has surgical and orthopaedic patients.

“Ward Three, a female ward, has surgical, gynaecological, orthopaedic, paediatric and burn patients,” says the report by the health committee.

In addition to the shortage of beds, the maternity ward lacks mosquito nets posing a risk of malaria to the patients.

The committee observed that despite having 112 nurses, the paediatric ward is served by one nurse.


In 2015 a report by the Commission for the Implementation of the Constitution revealed that Nyeri County had one of the best health systems as well as the highest number of medical staff in the country.

The CIC report showed that the ratio of nurses to the population was 1:654, which was way above the national proportion of 1:2,054.

Ironically, the report shows that Karatina has enough linen and mattresses.

The committee reported that the county government had purchased adequate linen for the hospital and was planning to buy additional beds.

Besides the beds, the wards have inadequate cupboards since most of them have broken down forcing patients to share.

“The maintenance department of the hospital is not able to do the painting and repair broken beds and cupboards due to lack of funds,” states the report as an explanation from the hospital.

In addition, the hospital’s medical autoclave (the machines used to sterilise surgical instruments and hospital equipment) has broken down, which causing patients is booked for surgery to suffer.

The laundry machine is also old and it keeps on breaking down hence it poses a challenge in cleaning linen for the patients.

The hospital blamed the poor provision of services on delay by the county’s Health Service Department in releasing funds to the hospital.

It said that the delay has also hampered its efforts in the provision of better services and quick response to emergencies.

“This delay has led to some suppliers withdrawing their provisions such as milk,” says the report.