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Covid-19: Hospitals in Eswatini ‘run out of body bags’

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Hospitals in Eswatini are reportedly running out of body bags due to a surge in COVID-19-deaths.

The Times of Swaziland reported that a source at a hospital told the publication “that in the past two weeks, most of the bodies were wrapped in sheet-covers and put into plastic materials upon being confirmed dead.”

The source was quoted as saying that “It is a bad experience as the orderlies and the nursing staff are subjected to this situation.

They had no choice after being told by management that there were shortages of body bags and had to use sheets fabric to wrap the bodies of those who had died before making sure that they improvise using the available plastic bags.

The whole of last week has been a bad experience to the workers and this has also been the situation at Good Shepherd.”

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There are concerns among health workers in the country that the crisis is exposing them to infection.

The publication quoted another source working at the health institution as saying that “We lost another health worker at the facility due to being exposed to the virus. She died while also admitted to the facility after contracting the virus.

It is so discouraging because she complained that the shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE) was a major issue for health workers. Ideally, we are supposed to wear three protective garments to ensure that we are always protected when attending to patients.”

“The issue of the body bags was discussed during our shift briefings after informing the management about the shortage of stock. It is commendable that the management has since addressed it,” the source said.

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Swaziland Democratic Nurses Union (SWADNU) President Bheki Mamba, has asked the government to prioritise the adequate supply of body bags, particularly because they were essential in the protection of health workers against infectious diseases like the prevailing coronavirus.

Eswatini formerly known as Swaziland has so far confirmed 15,804 cases of the virus including 574 deaths.

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