A Kenyan health worker has succumbed to the novel coronavirus, Kahawa Tungu has learnt.
Reports indicate that the 38-year-old medical doctor identified as Doreen Adisa Lugaliki succumbed to the virus within 48 hours of being admitted at a private hospital in Nairobi.
Dr Lugaliki, who contracted the virus in the line of duty, is suspected to have had an underlying medical condition that put her at a high risk of succumbing to the disease.
The mother of three had trained at the University of Nairobi both as an undergraduate and for her postgraduate as an obstetrician gynaecologist.
Dr Mercy Korir, a medical journalist with KTN News, was among the first doctors to announce the death of their colleague.
“We have lost one of our own as a doctors’ fraternity to #Covid_19. A young doctor with so much to offer, ” she wrote on her Twitter page on Friday morning.
We have lost one of our own as a doctors’ fraternity to #Covid_19. A young doctor with so much to offer.
— Dr. Mercy Korir (@DrMercyKorir) July 10, 2020
While reacting to the medic’s death Dr Simon Kigondu, the National Secretary of the Kenya Medical Association, said that the government should come up with better ways of reducing the risk of exposure of health workers to Covid-19 by investing in local health systems.
“Covid-19 is an occupational illness for doctors. We need to consider an increase in the number of human resources for health to allow doctors to also work in shifts and minimize exposure to the virus, ” he said.
In a tweet, the Kenya Medical Practitioners, Pharmacists and Dentists Union (KMPDU) also reiterated the need to better both government and private health facilities in the country amid the Covid-19 pandemic.
“KMPDU mourns the death of Dr Doreen Adisa Lugaliki who passed on due to COVID-19 contracted at the workplace. We reiterate & remind GOK & ALL Private health facilities that the Welfare, Occupational Safety & Health of frontline workers is a non-negotiable Minimum!!” said KMPDU.
KMPDU mourns the death of Dr. Doreen Adisa Lugaliki who passed on due to COVID-19 contracted at the work place. We reiterate & remind GOK & ALL Private health facilities that the Welfare,Occupational Safety & Health of frontline workers is a non-negotiable Minimum!!
— KMPDU (@kmpdu) July 10, 2020
Dr Lugaliki becomes the first health worker to succumb to Covid-19 in the country.
So far, according to the ministry of health, a total of 257 health workers have contracted the contagious disease since its outbreak in the country.
The health workers are said to have contracted the virus in the line of duty.
Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe revealed the statistics in Makueni County on Wednesday.
The CS was in the county to assess its preparedness to combat the pandemic.
Kenya has recorded 8,975 coronavirus cases so far, with 173 deaths and 2,657 recoveries.