15 new coronavirus cases confirmed as Kagwe denies funds misuse : The Standard

Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe has announced that 15 more people have tested positive for the coronavirus in Kenya.The eight women and seven men now push the national tally to 411.

In the last 24 hours, some 1,434 samples were tested, Kagwe said.The country’s recovery rate currently stands at 36.5 per cent. So far, 21 people have succumbed to the disease.

The CS admitted that normal activities have been altered, including holding official meetings which are now held virtually.Speaking at Afya House in Nairobi on Friday, the CS added that coronavirus has also improved lives and taught citizens lessons they may carry in future such as reduced travel and better hygiene.

By April 30, three million positive cases had been recorded globally while more than 217,000 have died.The high numbers may seem to diminish the cases in Kenya, which Kagwe says is no cause for celebration.

Testing capacity has increased as well as targeted mass testing.Government hospitals are at the moment offering coronavirus tests at a more reduced rate.

Previous reports indicated the tests were being conducted in private hospitals that charged between Sh10,000-Sh20,000.Government facilities charge between Sh2,000-Sh4,000.

Kagwe denied that the ministry is mismanaging funds, especially on the numerous adverts on coronavirus spread and staying home.He cautioned citizens against spreading and believing malicious rumours.

“If one is culpable…they will not be spared,” Kagwe added, concerning budgetary questions on covid-19 funds expenditure.Even so, the CS still insisted that investigations into alleged funds misuse will start if there is evidence of misappropriation.

Additional testing kits will be dispatched to Busia, Malindi, Machakos, Kitale and Mandera counties.There is ongoing specialised training for healthcare workers, especially on the use of ventilators.

Mass production of PPEs is also expected to boost the fight against coronavirus, with 6,600 locally made equipment being distributed.In two weeks, all counties will have received PPEs, the CS added.

Kagwe said the government is keen to cushion healthcare workers at the frontline in fighting coronavirus.For instance, the government has facilitated the stay of healthcare workers expected to stay at Kenyatta University hospital.

“It is our job to support them financially.”As the government and citizens seek to flatten the curve, truck drivers coming in and out of the country have proven to be a weak link. However, Kagwe says every 14 days the drivers will be tested and retested.

On travel restrictions, the Health docket chief added that they are still in effect, as well as the curfew order, the ban on public gatherings and social distancing.The CS cautioned Kenyans against flouting the rules, saying the indiscipline will hurt any progressive steps in curbing covid-19 spread.

Kagwe continued that indiscipline has further hampered efforts such as the implementation of home-based care in place of quarantine as has been the case in Germany and Sweden.

“Home-based care will be introduced slowly at a time when we know we are taking this disease seriously.”

Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe coronavirus

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