Mosquito nets improve life for patients and staff
While Kenya is slowly emerging from the yearlong coronavirus pandemic, another plague has hit the AMS clinic-mosquitos. They have always been buzzing around the area but excessive amounts of rain over the past two years has increased the mosquito population exponentially.
Open windows at the clinic and maternity ward mean anything can get inside including clouds of mosquitos. Wooden shutters that do not totally close or allow airflow are not practical in the heat. Staff were doing their best while taking care of patients and new mothers as swarms of the insects pestered them.
With the increase in mosquito numbers, malaria cases have also risen. Disease carrying mosquitos easily transmit malaria from an infected person to a non-infected. Malaria is most severe in the very young and very old and can cause complications in pregnancy. It is, however, easily treatable if caught early.
The main clinic typically stocks two weeks worth of malaria medication, however now the clinic needs double that amount. Supplies are restocked every week because of the increased number of malaria patients coming in.
Help comes in the form of nets and spraying
Fortunately, AMS was able to purchase 14 mosquito nets for $140 to put over patient beds. While always teaching the importance of protection against mosquitos and disease, the clinic can now set the example for patients to see.
In addition, AMS hired a public health official for $110 to come spray the clinic grounds. The spraying forced everyone to stay outside for three hours and there was some residue to clean up afterwards. However, everyone should now have some relief from the pests for at least three months.
Money raised last year to support the clinic supplied the $250 needed to purchase the nets and spraying. Future plans include installing a new windows with netting to keep nature outside while staff work with patients inside.