We burn all our used masks, Mbagathi Hospital says

The inside of an isolation ward in Mbagathi Hospital. Photo/Courtesy

The management of Mbagathi Hospital has refuted claims that face masks being recycled and later sold by hawkers are from the facility.

The hospital’s board chair, Dr George Osewe, has dismissed the claims, saying the facility burns all its waste.

This comes after viral social media posts alleging that the masks being recycled and later sold to unsuspecting Kenyans come from Mbagathi Hospital.

In one of the videos doing rounds online, a man is seen washing the masks and airing them to dry.

Dr Osewe, however, said there is no proof whatsoever that the said masks are from the facility.

“We as the hospital management and board members wish to categorically state that all used masks of the hospital wastes are incinerated in the hospital incinerator,” said Dr Osewe in a statement.

The board chair, nonetheless, said they have launched investigations into the allegations.

“We care about our patients and the general population as regards to their safety. At this time where we have the Covid-19, as a hospital, we are taking preventative measures seriously and cannot conduct action that put public lives at risk,” he said.

The demand for face masks has shot up in recent weeks after the government warned Kenyans that they risk being arrested and fined for not wearing them when out in public.

Institutions like banks and supermarkets are also turning away customers that do not put on masks, making recycling of used face masks a booming business.

This has caught the attention of the Ministry of Health with Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe advising people to properly dispose used masks by either tearing or burning them to prevent against their re-use.