A 20-bed Isolation Ward designed to handle the most severe COVID-19 patients has been officially opened by the Governor of Dohuk in partnership with the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Iraq.
Constructed by UNDP and funded by USAID, the Isolation Ward sits adjacent to Dohuk’s Burns and Plastic Surgery Hospital and will serve a catchment area of 325,000 residents from Duhok, Akre, Semel, Zakho, Shekhan, Amedi and Bardarash districts. It includes life-saving medical equipment.
The facility is one of 13 isolation wards currently being established across the country by UNDP to support the Government of Iraq and Kurdistan Regional Government’s efforts to manage the COVID-19 pandemic. Other measures under UNDP’s response package include increasing the testing capacity of laboratories, providing personal protective equipment to healthcare workers and undertaking assessments to establish post-COVID-19 recovery strategies.
“The new isolation Ward is critical for Dohuk, which continues to host a high number of people displaced from the ISIL conflict, as well as Syrian refugees. This facility will help alleviate pressure on nearby health centers, providing quality care for infected patients and a purpose-built environment for frontline workers,” says Resident Representative of UNDP Iraq, Zena Ali Ahmad.
In future, the Isolation Ward can be repurposed to treat patients with airborne infections and respiratory illnesses. The equipment can also be used to enhance the capacity of ICUs to provide intensive respiratory care.