We are delighted to confirm that the first Isolation Centre for Victoria Falls is now complete and ready for use following extensive work and refurbishments.

It must be mentioned that this would not have been possible without the generosity of so many members of the community and our incredibly generous donors from all over the world who have stepped forward to assist the ongoing efforts of the Victoria Falls COVID-19 taskforce in their preparedness and response to the COVID-19 pandemic that has impacted us all.

The procedure for the isolation centre will be that potentially sick people will be screened at the gate in the first ‘arrival tent’, given surgical masks and then will await assessment in open air seating to make the risk of cross infection as low as possible. Meals from family for any patients admitted will also be dropped at this point with the gate being manned by ZRP and ZNA.

Patients are then screened and tested by medical personal and either sent home to self isolate and be monitored or admitted into the main white tent area for further assessment by a doctor. This area contains doctors clothed in full PPE before a patient enters. Ambulance drop offs will also be made to this area. Once a doctor has further assessed the patient, they will either be admitted to isolation centre 1, 2 or High Care depending on the level of need. Emergency oxygenation is available in this tented area whilst assessments are being done and a portable gurney for any patients too ill to walk.

Once through the doors of the building, full isolation protocol is in place and full PPE will be used. There are currently 10 beds available and we are able to increase this, with 2 ventilators, 2 mini ventilators, a CPAP machine, suction machines and oxygenator as well as oxygen therapy by tank. There is a full lab on site able to do FBC and a GeneXpert machine will be equipped in the coming days, and will be able to do COVID19 tests.

A pharmacy is on site for all medication issues. Medical staff will exit through back entrance where they will immediately undress from PPE, which will go into the blue sealed containers for decontamination measures and medical staff will shower and further decontaminate.

The kitchen is accessed from the outside, so no entry into the isolation zone until meals come through. Onsite is a large generator and 2 water tanks, 2 x 200l solar geysers and hot water and sinks in all rooms, as well as a bathroom section.

Please note that this isolation centre is free and will be staffed by government medical teams. Anyone who needs medical assistance can be admitted here. As a community, Victoria Falls would like to extend a heartfelt thank you to every single person who has played a role in making this possible.

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