Kenya witnessed a sharp increase of covid-19 cases after 602 positive cases were confirmed by the Health Ministry on Thursday.
The new cases were from a sample size of 5,618, bringing the caseload in the country to 43,143 from cumulative tests of 607,241.
Early this week, the ministry said they had received enough consignment of reagents that would enable more tests to be conducted across the country.
Previously, the numbers had gone down in what the ministry had termed as a challenge in the global access to test kits and reagents.
“In one of my briefings when we had very low numbers we had stated that we had received a large consignment of test kits that is why we are seeing our numbers pick up in a couple of days,” Health CAS Rashid Aman said.
“We do have sufficient reagents now that we believe will take us through the next quarter and we also have arrangements to refill that supply line during this period.”
In a statement on Thursday, Health CS Mutahi Kagwe confirmed that eight more patients had succumbed to the disease, raising the number of deaths to 805.
However, 80 patients recovered from the virus; 51 from the home based care programme and 29 were discharged from the various health facilities across the country, bringing the total recoveries to 31,508.
In terms of distribution of cases per county, Nairobi continued to lead in the number of new infections after recording 133 cases, followed by Nakuru and Uasin Gishu with 47 cases each, Kilifi and Kisumu with 46 cases each while Mombasa recorded 44 new cases.
Kericho had 32, Kakamega 28, Turkana 25, Kisii 21, Machakos 20, Laikipia 13, Nyandarua and Bungoma 12, Kiambu 11, Nandi 10, Busia and Kajiado seven cases each, Baringo and Garissa six cases each, West Pokot and Nyamira five and Makueni three.
Others include Nyeri, Embu, Siaya, Bomet and Vihiga two cases each while Lamu, Wajir, Samburu, Narok, Murang’a and Meru recorded one case each.
Last week, the ministry raised alarm over what it termed as a ‘puzzling pattern’ of Covid-19 infections in five counties in the last one week.
They include Nakuru, Trans Nzoia, Kisumu, Mombasa and Nairobi. These counties according to Aman had been recording low cases but have suddenly began shooting up.
“From the time Covid-19 left the cities and went to the counties you expect that the numbers will be high and you see that a lot of the numbers are being contributed form the different counties. So this was expected,” the Kenya Medical Association SG Simon Kigongu said
The association has urged the government to continue strengthening the health systems in the country amid rising cases of Covid-19.
This will include hiring more health workers and equipping the hospitals especially at the county level to ensure the economy continues.
The association has however noted that due to limited capacity to test for the virus, the focus be on the symptomatic cases and the vulnerable.
“We may not advocate for mass testing in schools but we advise internal vigilance for those who have symptoms but he most important aspect of it is the prevention aspect of wearing masks, washing hands with soap and water and ensuring that all the guidelines are followed,”Kigondu said.
The rise in cases has been blamed on the laxity among Kenyans after relaxation of some containment measures as well as the improved testing capacity after more reagents were received.