6 November 2012

Kenya: Safaricom Hands Over Laundry Machines to Hospital

Kiriaini — The Kiriaini Mission Hospital has acquired additional laundry machines that will see adequate supply of clean linen to patients through funding from the Safaricom Foundation.

The hospital has been operating with one laundry machine since it was founded by missionaries decades ago and has not had a drier for the last two years since it was declared obsolete, after breaking down on several occasions.

Speaking during the handover ceremony, Catherine Muthoki of Safaricom retail, said the situation has hampered the supply of clean linen to patients, thereby posing a health hazard at the medical institution.

"With new strains of communicable diseases emerging every day, medical institutions have a challenge to ensure that they observe the highest standards in cleanliness to ensure that the patients recover at the earliest possible opportunity. One of the important things medical institutions must do is to ensure that the patients' clothes and linen are changed regularly," Muthoki noted.

She added: "According to a World Health Organisation manual on infection prevention and control, laundries used for cleaning linen in health care facilities should comply with the infection prevention and control policies and guidelines and this is a step towards this direction."

The hospital's administrator Bernard Muriithi thanked Safaricom for the donation, noting that the washing machine they have been using has been unreliable, making it difficult for the hospital to guarantee a regular supply of clean linen for patients.

"On any given day we have an average of 45 inpatients, who are supposed to change their clothes and linen at least once in 24 hours. Meeting this demand has been a challenge. The operating theatre has also suffered a lot as a result of this situation," he explained.

"This is a cold region and sometimes drying of linen through the use of direct sunlight has been difficult. With a drier, we will now be able to dry them even during the rainy season like the one we are getting into," he added.

The laundry machines which were bought at a cost of Sh861,600 are expected to provide access to good hygiene to both the patients and the laundry workers thus providing safety and comfort.

This is the second time that the Foundation is making a Corporate Social Investment at the hospital located in Kiriaini, Murang'a County.

In 2012, the Foundation made a donation of Sh1.2 million in the renovation and extension of the outpatient department of the hospital that has a catchment area that covers three administrative divisions with a population of over 250,000.

The Safaricom Foundation has been involved in various activities such as the donation of ambulances and equipment for health centres and hospitals; provision of medical care through mobile clinics; supporting preventive health campaigns through information, education and screening facilities; supporting counselling and specialised treatment for women with fistula and survivors of sexual and gender based violence.

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