HomeDiseaseCOVID-19Mutahi Kagwe calls on counties to prepare for possible fourth COVID wave

Mutahi Kagwe calls on counties to prepare for possible fourth COVID wave

Health Cabinet Secretary, Mutahi Kagwe, has admitted that the Ministry of Health is preparing for a possible fourth wave of COVID-19.

Speaking in Kibra while overseeing the polio vaccination programme, the CS said that the government had started enhancing health facilities capacity to deal with the threat.

Variant from India spreading fast

Kagwe warned that the current Oxygen capacity was not enough should the more transmissible variant from India spread widely. The B.1.617 variant has so far been confirmed in at least 28 people.

First detected in Kisumu, many of the cases are in the lakeside county and have shaken the county’s health facilities. The variant is one of four that WHO has termed as a variant of concern.

“The variant from India is more dangerous than the one from South Africa and the UK. So, we need to be extra careful,” Kagwe said.

Boost oxygen capacity

He called on counties across the country to boost their oxygen capacity as the B.1.617 has been shown to lead to more hospitalization.

“We are asking the county governments to boost their oxygen capacity in hospitals, to pipe at the facilities wards. Prepare with the supply of oxygen beyond what we currently have,” Kagwe urged.

Kagwe’s warning comes just a few days after former Premier, Raila Odinga, held a rally in Kisumu backing the BBI. Raila addressed a large crowd of his supporters without adhering to the COVID-19 public health guidelines. This move saw many criticize Raila Odinga, who spent a few days in hospital due to the illness.

Fluctuating tests

Kenya is coming off a lockdown imposed in five counties a few weeks back, as cases dropped off in May. However, fluctuating tests figures means that there is no reliable way of accurately telling the prevalence in the country.

The positivity rate varies widely from a low of 5% to 10-11 % from day to day. Furthermore, a decline in the number of tests done means the continued spread is hard to map.

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