Unclaimed bodies overcrowd Kakamega Hospital mortuary

Friday December 29 2017

Kakamega County General Hospital.

A patient outside the Kakamega County General Hospital. Many bodies remain unclaimed at the hospital mortuary, making it overcrowded. PHOTO | FILE | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

By BENSON AMADALA
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The unclaimed bodies at the Kakamega County General Hospital mortuary have overcrowded the facility and are threatening to disrupt services.

The hospital's public health officer Mustafa Yusuf said on Friday that the mortuary currently has 17 unidentified bodies of adults and 50 of babies.

DECOMPOSED

Some of the bodies have started decomposing. 

The facility is currently under renovation and has a capacity to handle 20 bodies. It serves Kakamega and Vihiga counties.

Mr Yusuf said they have been unsuccessful in identifying relatives to collect the bodies for burial. The unidentified bodies have been lying at the mortuary for the last eight months.

“We have therefore moved to court and obtained orders to bury the 17 bodies and six foetuses at the public cemetery,” said Mr Yusuf.

UNIDENTIFIED

Some of the bodies were brought in by police officers from accident scenes, while others belong to people suspected to have been murdered and their bodies dumped in bushes.

“A large number of the bodies are from Shinyalu, Khwisero, Navakholo and other parts of the county, but it is increasingly becoming difficult to handle the situation due to the limited facilities available at the mortuary,” said the public health boss.

He said the foetuses were abandoned by mothers who lost their babies during delivery.

Mr Yusuf said that after burying the first batch of bodies, he would return to court to obtain orders to bury the rest of the bodies.