12 mentally challenged persons in Mombasa Old town area have been rescued and taken for rehabilitation at the specially built Coast National Polytechnic for specialized care.
Speaking during the exercise under the auspice of Mombasa Empowerment Network Chairperson Amina Abdalla said she embarked on the exercise to rescue the many elderly and mentally challenged people who might not survive if they contract the deadly Covid-19 virus.
Mrs. Abdalla said six out of the 12 rescued are above 80 years old who had been wandering in the streets of Old town and now at risk of contracting the virus after the area was declared a hot spot in the country.
Have homes and families
“It is sad to realize that some of the mental cases in the streets have homes where they go every evening and it is risky for the whole families since they are loitering in the streets where they mingle with unsuspecting populations who might have the disease,” Amina said.
She reiterated that the pandemic is real and members of the public should take note and protect everyone including the mentally ill patients.
Amina and her team of volunteers collected the vulnerable population from Old town streets and safely handed them over to health officials at the newly refurbished 120 bed capacity at the Coast National polytechnic to cater for mentally challenged persons.
She said those taken will undergo cleaning exercise, feeding program and the team for COVID-19 will take test samples to ascertain if they have been infected or not.
“The exercise will continue after every 2 days to create time for tests to be carried on the daily numbers before more are brought on board to avoid congestion and test delays due to large numbers,” Amina noted.
She called for corporation with families with mentally challenged patients who might miss their family member not to panic since they are in safe hands at the refurbished COVID-19 unit.
Mombasa county Officer in charge of mental health Celina Kithinji said the patients have shown symptoms of high fever where they shall all be kept in separate isolation rooms before their samples are taken for COVID-19 test.
Mrs. Kithinji added that additional staff will be availed to the team of doctors, nurses and health officials already at the facility depending on the different disease dynamics the patients will reveal.