Since the coronavirus reared its ugly head in the country, there have been little behavioral change in how we conduct ourselves in the public. This despite the various guidelines set by the Government to avert the spread of the Corona Virus.
From 3rd March 2020, the virus has camouflaged to find its way into the villages hence bringing down the human race at a very supersonic speed. With the new variants being witnessed and it’s rapid mutation in the body, it has presented itself in waves with the latest wave being the strongest so far.
Kenya is in the third wave, which has led to the stricter guidelines in the Lake Region that was identified to be the endemic region. Stringent measures were put in place to counter the spread by lengthening curfew hours and restricting movement in those counties. Siaya being among the affected counties after posing threat by topping the list among the countries has made some great strides in ensuring that the curve is flattened. This has been done majorly through the campaign to tighten the relaxed measures which led to the surge.
As the struggle continues, the department of health has made some concerted effort to sustain the life of affected individuals who are always cared for at the isolations unit. The unit of 200 beds at the county referral hospital is currently hosting 48 patients, out of whom 19 are surviving on oxygen support.
The Nurse in charge of the Siaya Referral Hospital Isolation Unit Mr. Leonard Otieno says that great strides have been made within the isolation to sustain best standards of service delivery. This has been done by placing some standby concentrators which help in case there are emergencies in the oxygen supply.
Mr. Otieno adds that they offer hospitable services which are friendlier to the sick. “Within the unit, we do offer counseling by the clinical psychologist in case one dies because others will be traumatized before offering discharge to go home,” says Otieno in an interview.
With the number of those whose lives depend on oxygen increasing, the oxygen consumption is very high averaging at 15 cylinders day time and 18 at night according to the Nurse. His statement is echoed by County BioMedical Engineer Mr. Thaddeus Ogutu.
With the increase number of COVID-19 patients in Siaya County, the county has restricted transportation of oxygen to other counties to meet Siaya needs first according to Engineer Ogutu.