Coronavirus pandemic has affected our economy, our social lives, and worst of all taking away our loved ones. Many people all over the world have perished from this noble virus and the numbers are yet to rise. While every continent and every country are doing all that can work to contain the virus and stop spreading, the developing countries are far behind in meeting the tests and this is leading to more coronavirus deaths.
What is contributing to increasing Kenya’s Coronavirus Deaths?
Kenya’s coronavirus status has recorded a constant increase of Covid-19 cases since the withdrawal of the lockdown and extension of curfew hours. Poor health-seeking behavior and the delays in the Covid-19 test results are some reasons for the increasing number of cases and deaths in the country.
According to the Ministry of Health report as of August 5, the high percentage, about 93 percent are asymptomatic. Meaning, the patients are not showing immediate signs and symptoms of the virus. The primary clinical signs are cough, fever, difficulty in breathing and headache, recording 52, 39, 29, 12 percent respectively.
Covid-19 Testing Scenarios in Kenyan Counties
Kenya’s Ministry of Health testing protocol is on a higher-end maximizing effort on persons showing symptoms. This means the cases might be detected and managed before spreading. But this is not the case.
“The long turnaround time for relaying laboratory results to clients in most counties is causing a delay in public health action,”
the Health Ministry said in a report.
This is experienced in the county levels, for example, Nakuru County, where the County Boss Lee Kinyanjui has raised the alarm on the delays of the test results. The Governor said the county has seen delays of one week long on sample tests taken to the Kenya Medical Research Institute in Nairobi.
“For example, we are yet to receive results of 309 samples taken to KEMRI lab on July 28, 2020. Such a delay could lead to further spread of the disease, putting hundreds of lives at risk,”
the governor said.
Kenya’s Coronavirus deaths statistics have reached 399, with more than 500 new cases recorded daily and a total of 24, 441 cases in the country.
The Ministry of Health Response
The Health Ministry has responded to this matter, highlighting an inconsistent supply of adequate test kits and reagents to meet the huge demand across the nation. However, On the 3rd of August, The Ministry of Health Director-General Patrick Amoth changed the discharge protocols which will not allow for a second test for patients whose symptoms have cleared. This will make test kits available for testing.
Apart from the delays in test results, the health ministry has also recorded a trend where Covid-19 patients show symptoms late when medical support cannot help. With the highest number of fatalities recorded at the start of August after 23 patients died.
“Patients present late. Like among the deaths we reported, two of them occurred at the community level (occurred at home),’’
The Need for Early Testing
Covid- 19 virus sometimes present unfamiliarity symptoms. It means it can happen that your lungs are not functioning properly but feel everything is just okay. Only for you to get to the hospital normally and you are found to be in critical condition and rushed to the intensive care unit.
This gives the priority and needs for more testing as the most important way to keep safe or seek immediate care for patients found positive.
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