Patients in quarantine at the Kenyatta National Hospital’s Infectious Diseases Unit (IDU) at Mbagathi, Nairobi, will now find it easier to keep in touch with their loved ones and the outside world, after Telkom donated free 50 Mbps Internet connectivity to the facility.
Psychology experts posit that social isolation is one of the most difficult experiences for human beings to endure. With COVID-19, quarantined patients are deprived of external social contact including family, friends and the life that they are used to.
Telkom says that this can exact an additional toll on their health beyond the physiological symptoms of the virus. The physical or virtual presence of family and friends constitutes an important source of psychological stability and overall therapy during quarantine.
According to Mr Kris Senanu, Telkom Kenya Managing director- Enterprise division, the internet will enable patients in quarantine, to have access to their family and friends, and hopefully help them cope better while undergoing treatment.
“Social isolation can be a very traumatic experience, with most patients already worried about the nature of the virus and the impact that it has had on their day to day lives. Family and friends are an important part of an individual’s social fabric; they also form part of one’s support system,” said Senanu.
Telkom has also provisioned the National Emergency Response Committee on Coronavirus, that is based at the Ministry of Health’s offices at Afya House, with free Internet connectivity, to support their work in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic in Kenya. The 200 Mbps link will also be used by the Ministry of Health’s offices at Afya House.
Telkom and its partner Loon Inc. recently announced that a larger fleet of balloons is heading to Kenya, to join the balloons that are already active and part of a network integration exercise in Kenyan airspace, in readiness for deployment of the Loon service in the country. The Loon service, will seek to use its 4G/LTE Internet solution to connect unserved and under-served communities in Kenya. Initial coverage areas have already been identified, starting with Nairobi, Machakos, Nyeri, Nakuru, Kitui, Nanyuki, Narok and into Kisii.