Virus spread rises as more counties now record cases

Friday, May 29th, 2020 00:00 |
Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe (centre) with his ICT counterpart Joe Mucheru (left) and Kiambu Governor James Nyoro when the CSs visited Kiambu county Covid-19 centre at Tigoni Hospital, yesterday. Photo/COURTESY

Eric Wainaina and Clement Kamau

The extent of the spread of coronavirus is slowly being exposed by the daily surge in numbers as the ministry reported 147 infections yesterday, the highest number since the disease was first reported in the country in March.

This is even as some regions, which had previously not recorded any case, notably Nyeri, Homa Bay and Uasin Gishu counties, joined the list of those affected. The number of counties that have reported cases now stands at 32. 

Yesterday, Health Cabinet secretary Mutahi Kagwe, in his daily briefing announced that 87 men and 60 women, including a one-year-old infant tested positive after tests were carried out on 2,831 samples from various parts of the country. 

Out of the 147 cases,  Kagwe, who made his address at Tigoni Hospital in Limuru, Kiambu county, said Nairobi continues to be the hardest hit, having recorded 90 new cases bringing its total tally to 838 cases.

Of the new cases, Kagwe said 35 are from Kibera slums (where residents have been accused of disobeying behavioral protocols) followed by its neighbour Langata with 15 cases, Makadara (nine), Westlands (eight), Embakasi Central (six) while Embakasi South has five cases.

“It’s a worrying trend and we must collectively work on taming the spread,” said the CS who was accompanied by his Information and Technology counterpart Joe Mucheru and Kiambu Governor James Nyoro.

Mombasa county, recorded 41 new cases, bringing the total to 490.  “The readiness of the county is commensurate with cooperation between the Executive, the Legislature and the county people,” he said.

 Nyoro said his county, which has been listed number four in terms of cases with 39, had assembled coronavirus units in Gatundu, Thika and Kiambu level hospitals with a capacity of 60 beds.

Further, Tigoni Hospital, which has been dedicated as an isolation centre has a bed capacity of 45 and another one with a capacity of 200 beds is under construction at Wangige.  

The county, Nyoro said, has mapped out hotspots, which are Soko Mjinga market along the Nairobi-Nakuru Highway where five positive cases have been recorded, Githurai and Makongeni markets in Thika, Kiambu town and its environs as well as Kwa Maiko in Githunguri.

Meanwhile, the government yesterday launched a five-year Menstrual Hygiene Policy and strategy to mark World Menstrual Hygiene day.

The policy that will cover 2019-2024 is aimed at ensuring women and girls have access to safe and hygienic products.

“Kenya is the first nation to develop a stand alone menstrual health policy through a multi-stakeholder consultative and inclusive process,” Kagwe said

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