Don’t mislead Kenyans on Coronavirus Health Cabinet Secretary warns leaders

Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe addressing a press conference on update of coronavirus at Harambee house

Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe has condemned leaders who are spreading false information on coronavirus.
“It’s disheartening for those in leadership to continue perpetuating false information that has nothing to do with real cases just to gain political mileage, ” the CS said after confirming four more cases of coronavirus in the country bringing the total to 42.

The misinformation has been doing rounds in the social media where a local leader claims that there are over 7000 people in mandatory quarantine.

“This is not true. It is immoral and unethical for anyone to mislead people for whatever reason they may have in regard to the fight against Coronavirus,” he noted.

The CS disclosed that medical teams from the Ministry of Health have embarked on mass testing for persons who arrived in the country last week based on their dates of arrival.

He said that the suspected cases will remain in quarantine for the full duration while those who test positive will be taken to isolation facilities.

The CS disclosed that a total of 69 samples from suspected cases of Coronavirus have been analyzed in the various laboratories and out of these four cases have been confirmed positive for coronavirus.

The confirmed include one Kenyan and three foreigners from America, Cameroon, and Burkina Faso. Three of the cases are from Nairobi and one from Mombasa. This now brings to 42 the number of those who have tested positive for the virus in Kenya.

Nairobi County continues to lead with 31 cases of those who have so far tested positive, followed by Kilifi with six, Mombasa with three, while Kajiado and Kwale with one each”, the CS said.

Out of the 42 positive cases, 24 are males while 18 are female. Tracing of contacts for the 42 confirmed cases is ongoing bringing the total number of close contacts that are being monitored to 1426.

Out of this number, the CS said 215 have been discharged after completing the mandatory 14 days follow up period and currently the Health Team is now monitoring 919 close contacts while 18 individuals are admitted at Mbagathi Hospital awaiting test results. So far the government has tested 877 persons for coronavirus disease.

As of 28th May 2020, the global figures stood at 571, 678 of persons who have tested positive for Coronavirus and 26,494 have succumbed since the disease outbreak.

Within the last 24 hours, Italy has reported 971 deaths, Spain 769 deaths while the USA has recorded a total of 16894 new cases with 252 deaths in a period of 24 hours.

This scenario, the CS said reflects the possible outcomes that the country is likely to face if we are complacent with the measures the government has put in place.

The CS appealed to Kenyans to embrace this fight against coronavirus as opposed to assuming that it is a government affair.

He noted that the Government is expanding capacity particularly in the counties and applauded the initiatives that the private sector has taken in particular the provision of PPE.

“There is no country that has been able to contain the disease on its facilities alone, our health facilities can be overrun anytime by the demand,’ he noted and added that next week the government will also hire 1000 medical personnel.

The Ministry is also working with the Ministry of Trade and industry to provide products such as masks and Protective Personal Equipment (PPE) locally.

“We are purchasing ventilators from many parts and although there is a shortage across the world, we have people who are assisting us such as the World Bank who have donated 250 ventilators and every effort is being done to source for many more,” he said.

Trade CS Betty Maina added that within the country, there are 50 companies that are capable of manufacturing ventilators and personal protective gear and they are working together to ensure there is a great capacity to supply goods.

Isiolo Governor Mohammed Kuti urged the schools to identify isolation areas in case the government is overwhelmed by the numbers. He also urged the companies and experts who can produce masks or protective gear to liaise with the County Emergency Response team.

The CS for Health also appealed to employers to release their employees early from their workstations to beat the curfew time.