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Qacha sets up COVID-19 isolation centres

Tebellong Hospital staff during the 2020 Moshoeshoe's Day celebration

June 21, 2021 2 min read

2 min read

WHILE some parts of Lesotho are struggling to contain COVID-19 infections fuelled by a virulent new local variant of the virus, Qacha’s Nek has selected two hospitals to operate as isolation facilities in the mountain district.

The hospitals include Tebellong as well as Machabeng and are expected to work with clinics which have been identified as the district points of temporary isolation.

According to the District Medical Officer Dr Balengesila Mwenyi, the spread of the virus is further propelled by 'COVID fatigue' and a series of 'super-spreader' events.

“But in Qacha's Nek, we are working hard to suppress the spread of the virus within the district,” he said.

He told Metro that because suspects cannot take care of severe or complicated cases on their own, if found positive, they will be send to the two hospitals for isolation purposes.

“Moreover, the severity of this problem is not just the shortage of trained healthcare professionals, but providing full care for patients in isolations and intensive care units is another major hitch,” Dr Mwenyi said.

In response to this challenge, he said they have trained nurses on infection prevention measures and management of COVID-19.

“I am also aware that there are nurses who are based in the district from Tšepong Hospital in Maseru, under case management pillar. We are planning to train them, so that they can be able to continue with the management at the hospital level,” he said.

To manage the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, he said they among others transfer patients from the health centres and ports of entry to the hospitals.

He said they also make follow-ups or contact tracing of positive cases in villages.

Dr Mwenyi said they have deployed health officials at the ports of entry, to screen, test and collect samples to be sent to the laboratories, adding that the samples are taken from travellers who are from South Africa.

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“Travellers who come from other districts in the country are screened at the health facilities,” he also said.

Apart from that, Dr Mwenyi was quick to show that the health system in Qacha’s Nek is well equipped with oxygen and an adequate supply of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to protect both the health workers and the patients.

“As a district, we have also procured enough test kits so that we do not have a shortage. We try to avoid having a situation whereby we have more patients and not enough kits,” he said.

He applauded the communities of Qacha’s Nek for religiously adhering to COVID-19 health protocols and the vaccination campaign.

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