Namibia: NDF Sets Up Emergency Hospital At Walvis

The Namibian Defence Force yesterday started building a mobile field hospital at Walvis Bay where people infected with Covid-19 will be treated.

According to the mission commander for mobile army field hospitals, Festus Sakaria, the facility will have 18 beds with two wards - one for men and the other for women.

He said it will be completed by tomorrow. Five army healthcare officials will help manage the facility.

According to Sakaria, the mobile field hospital division was given the directive from the defence headquarters to have the emergency hospital erected at the harbour town, which is Namibia's epicentre when it comes to coronavirus infections.

Acting senior medical officer at Walvis Bay State Hosptial, Dr Martha Ntinda told The Namibian that all 73 beds at Walvis Bay's three wards had been occupied by patients, most of them asymptomatic. Other patients have been moved to the Henties Bay isolation ward, where there are 700 beds.

She added that patients from the Walvis Bay wards will be moved to Henties Bay to make room for the more serious cases at Walvis Bay.

"This 18-bed facility will help us very much as the cases are fast increasing," she said.

Marine corps commander Appolos Haimbala, who is part of Erongo's law-enforcement team mandated with dealing with the Covid-19 emergency, told The Namibian that the NDF facility is not there to "kill" the envisioned 150-bed field hospital in the pipeline by the private sector.

This hospital will also be built at the Walvis Bay State Hospital grounds, where the other Covid-19 isolation wards are.

Erongo governor Neville Andre, who commissioned the construction, said the mobile hospital by the NDF was a sign of the collaborative work of the government in addressing the emergency needs of the people of Walvis Bay.

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