Kenya’s Machakos County turns local stadium into COVID-19 isolation facility

Kenya’s Machakos County has converted a local stadium into a makeshift isolation facility to help in the fight against COVID-19.

The 200-bed facility was unveiled by Governor Alfred Mutua, who said it would handle mild and non-critical cases.

Health officials there say it is easier to build makeshift hospitals than set up permanent structures considering the urgency of the measures against the pandemic.

“If we see numbers are increasing, we will be able to set up five more tents within that stadium to increase the number from sixty to three hundred beds, it’s doable and it’s a quicker and cheaper way of rather than setting up a whole hospital or destabilizing an hospital to make it a COVID-19 exclusive,” said Dr Ancent Kituku, County Executive – Health and Emergency Services.

Kenya is one of 52 countries in Africa that have recorded cases of COVID-19. The East African country has reported 363 cases and 14 deaths.

As part of the country’s efforts to tackle the disease, all 47 counties have put in place measures including strengthening their medical sectors.

Machakos County hopes the pandemic will not cause huge damage, but is optimistic the Isolation facility will play a big part in the fight.

“The stadia and the other one hundred and twenty two bed facility in our various facilities is going to help us curb the virus so we are just planning ahead, so far we don’t have a case but we don’t know what will happen tomorrow,” said Halima Adan, Director of Nursing Services, Machakos County.