Kenya National Union of Nurses Mombasa branch has expressed concerns over the surge in the number of nurses testing positive for COVID-19 terming the trend a ‘worry to the medics’.
The union points out that most of the nurses attending COVID-19 patients in health facilities lack the personal protective equipment to protect themselves.
Addressing the press in Mombasa on Tuesday, Mombasa branch KNUN secretary General Peter Maroko said for the past one week 2 nurses have succumbed to the disease while others have been admitted in hospitals.
Maroko expressed fears that the trend numbers could even be higher accusing the government on claims of giving out inaccurate data.
“5 nurses are under home based care. One is in the Intensive care unit and two have succumbed to the disease. The number may however be higher as the government has failed in giving out the right information,” he said.
He also asked the county government of Mombasa to prioritize on the Personal Protective equipment in a bid to counter the rapid spread of what he termed as the second wave of COVID-19.
“The KNUN official is appealing the national government to gazette COVID19 as an occupational disease. The Salaries and remuneration commission should create an Emergency Risk Allowance for the nurses,” he notes.
Maroko warned of a looming strike should the county government fail to pay nurses their September salaries adding that some of them are already going slow.
“Some of our nurses are on a go slow. Not all of us have received their pay. Some of them have been listed in the CRB,” lamented Maroko.
The KNUN official further accused the county government of Mombasa on claims of playing a ‘hide and seek game’ on the health of the nurses.
He also noted that for the past two weeks six nurses have tested positive of COVID19 in Mombasa County.
Meanwhile, Mombasa branch Kenya Union of Clinical Officers Franklin Makanga lamented on their September salaries.
He explains that some of the clinical officers within the county are on a go slow.
Makanga asked the national government to fast track the promotion of clinical officers saying they play a fundamental role in the health care system.
Said Makanga “The role of healthcare providers cannot be taken for granted. The government should do something by according them the promotion they deserve especially this period of COVID19,”