Nurses ask for training on coronavirus

Wednesday March 18 2020
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Tourists are screened at the Mombasa port on February 13, 2020 as way of abating the spread of coronavirus. PHOTO | FILE | NATION MEDIA GROUP

By DIANAH SHIMULI
By SHABAN MAKOKHA

Nurses have warned that Kenya could run into a health crisis should the virus strike, since medics have not been trained.

The Kenya Progressive Nurses Association (KPNA) now wants the government to urgently have nurses and other medics trained to be ready to respond to any issue that might arise.

KPNA chairperson Michael Nyongesa says nurses in the country, don’t have the capacity to handle the virus should it strike, yet Chinese nationals are being allowed in the country without considerate restrictions.

Speaking in Kakamega town Wednesday, Mr Nyongesa said a majority of health practitioners in the country are not well trained to handle the disease, that has caused fears across nations in the world.

“Covid-19 is a deadly virus considering the fatalities so far. The country must take precaution by enlightening all nurses on its symptoms and treatment,” said Mr Nyongesa.

He said every county should have a separate hospital and preventive gears in readiness.

He questioned why Kenya has not taken serious measures against the deadly disease, considering that more developed countries in the world, have banned foreigners, especially Chinese from jetting into their territory, to avoid more infections.

“America, Canada, Finland and France have the capacity to handle the virus and yet they have travel restrictions on China,” said Mr Nyongesa.

He also faulted President Uhuru Kenyatta for remaining silent on the virus alert.

“The President should give a command to the Kenya Airways against allowing Chinese nationals into the country as a move to minimise risk of infection,” said Mr Nyongesa.

Speaking separately, Kakamega Woman Rep Elsie Muhanda said there is concern about Kenyans being infected by the coronavirus.

She challenged the government to be serious in efforts to contain a possible outbreak of the virus.

“The national government should introduce measures to help businesses and workers. There should be strict protocols and procedures to be followed, for any foreigner visiting the country,” said Ms Muhanda.

She wants the government to set aside a special fund to handle any possible outbreak of the disease in the country.