The United Nations Office at Nairobi(UNON) has commissioned the construction of a 50-bed capacity health facility in Kenyan capital Nairobi to help in the fight against Covid-19 pandemic. Construction is set to take 60 days.
The facility will cater for UN workers and family members in Kenya and Africa at large.
The corona health facility whose construction kicked off yesterday, will have an operating theater, laboratory, radiology and physiology services and 150 beds, including 25 intensive-care and 50 high-dependency units.
The hospital is a partnership between UNON and the Nairobi Hospital.
But the Sh1.1 billion COVID 19 treatment facility will also benefit non UN workers in Kenya according to Foreign Affairs Cabinet Secretary Raychelle Omamo.
“This hospital is built on a solid partnership, this partnership shows the depth of the relationship between the Government of Kenya and the United Nations,” she said.
Nairobi Hospital Chief Executive Officer Allan Pamba said that the facility will play key role in managing the pandemic which continues to evolve on a daily basis.
On her part, UNON Director General Zainab Hawa Bangura said the construction of the facility in Nairobi demonstrates Kenya’s leadership in medical professionalism in the region.
“The agreement for the building of this treatment facility in Kenya underscores the UN’s faith in Kenya’s human resource and expertise, it is also a reflection of Nairobi’s role as a key peace-keeping humanitarian and development hub for Africa,” she said.
Bangura said the facility will be constructed by Kenyans, with locally sourced materials.
The move by the UN to construct a new hospital to fight coronavirus pandemic comes at a time when Kenya is recording a surge in infection. Figures stood at 13,353 as of Monday.
And president Uhuru Kenyatta has called for a national and county government summit on Covid-19 to discuss the development. Already, 44 out of 47 countries have reported coronavirus cases.
In a statement on Monday, President Uhuru said the session will entail checking the counties’ state of preparedness.
“The Session has been convened following a surge of Covid-19 infections across our Nation; with the disease having now manifested in 44 of our 47 counties,” the statement signed by State House spokesperson Kanze Dena-Mararo said.