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Pumwani Maternity set for Sh1.2bn upgrade

The Pumwani Maternity Hospital is set to get 250 extra beds and a neo-natal intensive care unit in a planned Sh1.2 billion upgrade by the Nairobi county government.

The upgrade will also include six theatres, a digital centre, a laboratory, a diagnostic centre, an ICT lab and an improved school of midwifery – all to be housed in a new six-storey block.

Health chief officer Robert Ayisi said in an interview on Tuesday that City Hall would award the tender to a developer who will use own funds to build the block and recover payments gradually from the county government.

“We are going to tender any time now. We have a transaction advisor who has taken us through the preparation stage,” said Dr Ayisi.

The project is styled as a public-private partnership but the investor will hand over the facility to the county rather than run it as Pumwani does not levy enough charges to enable recouping of investment.

The repayments will instead come from the county over a period that will be set during negotiations.

INCREASE WORKERS

Pumwani currently has 354 beds for mothers and 150 incubators and is run by 25 doctors and 187 nurses.

The number of health workers at the hospital is set to be increased after completion of the new facility.

“We want to put up a six-storey building that will house a new wing. This will enable us to increase the bed capacity and allow for the deployment of more doctors and nurses,” said governor Evans Kidero in August last year.

The investor will be responsible for the construction and equipping of the new wing. It is estimated that construction will take three years.

The county-run hospital records about 80 births daily, about 20 of them through caesarean sections.

The hospital recorded a 30 per cent jump in admissions following a directive by President Uhuru Kenyatta that all public hospitals waive maternity charges.