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COVID-19 exposes weaknesses in Kenya’s healthcare system. And what can be done

COVID-19 exposes weaknesses in Kenya’s healthcare system. And what can be done

THERE are reports that Kenya’s hospital beds are filling up because of a surge in COVID-19 patients. This highlights concerns since the start of the pandemic, that the health systems of many African countries would quickly become overwhelmed. Moina Spooner from The Conversation Africa asked Professors Abdu Mohiddin and Marleen Temmerman to explain what must be done. ABDU MOHIDDIN, Assistant Professor, Aga Khan University MARLEEN TEMMERMAN, Director of the Centre of Excellence in Women and Child Health and Chair of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology (OB/GYN), Aga Khan University What are the major deficiencies in Kenya’s healthcare system? Kenya’s…
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Nurses suffer burn-out, psychological distress in COVID fight – association

Nurses suffer burn-out, psychological distress in COVID fight – association

CECILE MANTOVANI MANY nurses caring for COVID-19 patients are suffering burn-out or psychological distress, and many have faced abuse or discrimination outside of work, the International Council of Nurses (ICN) said. Supplies of personal protective equipment for nurses and other health workers in some care homes remain insufficient, it said, marking World Mental Health Day. "We are extremely concerned about the mental health impact on nurses," Howard Catton, a British nurse who is the ICN's chief executive, told Reuters Television at the association's headquarters in Geneva. "Our most recent survey of national nurses' associations shows that more than 70% of…
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COVID-19: why critically ill patients in Africa are taking a bigger hit

COVID-19: why critically ill patients in Africa are taking a bigger hit

IN March 2020, those of us living on the African continent were terrified about what would happen. We had watched Wuhan and then Italy get overrun by Covid-19. These were environments far more resourced than Africa. BRUCE M BICCARD, Professor and Second Chair at Groote Schuur Hospital , University of Cape Town We knew that we had a limited healthcare workforce. And we have estimated that there was about one critical care bed per 100 000 population on the continent. The average across Europe was over 11 per 100 000 population. What scared us, even more, was a lack of…
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Nigerian doctors begin strike over salary, allowances

Nigerian doctors begin strike over salary, allowances

CAMILLUS EBOH RESIDENT doctors in Nigerian public hospitals began an indefinite strike on Monday over grievances that include the delayed payment of salaries and allowances, the doctors' union said, as coronavirus infections rise. Nigerian doctors frequently strike over what they say are poor conditions of service. Last year they walked out from their jobs three times, including over demands for an allowance for treating COVID-19 patients. Okhuaihesuyi Uyilawa, president of the National Association of Resident Doctors (NARD), said the strike had started early on Monday and that the government had not reached out to the union since it gave notice…
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‘Black fungus’ adds to India’s woes

‘Black fungus’ adds to India’s woes

MANAS MISHRA and KANNAKI DEKA THE Indian government has told doctors to look out for signs of mucormycosis or "black fungus" in COVID-19 patients as hospitals report a rise in cases of the rare but potentially fatal infection. The state-run Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) said at the weekend that doctors treating COVID-19 patients, diabetics and those with compromised immune systems should watch for early symptoms including sinus pain or nasal blockage on one side of the face, one-sided headache, swelling or numbness, toothache and loosening of teeth. The disease, which can lead to blackening or discolouration over the…
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South African hospitals overran by COVID-19 patients

South African hospitals overran by COVID-19 patients

AFRICAN MIRROR REPORTER SOUTH African hospitals are being overwhelmed by the ever-rising number of COVID-19 patients with some institutions forced to convert parking garages into wards. Hospitals across South Africa - both in the private and public sector - are battling with patients in a country where over 1.2-million people have been infected and over 33 163 have died from the deadly virus. In an effort to contain the spread of COVID-19, South Africa is currently on lockdown Level 3, in terms of which alcohol sales have been banned, public gathering outlawed, beaches closed and funerals restricted to 50 people.…
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