//Mandera County launches lab for Covid-19 tests

Mandera County launches lab for Covid-19 tests

The Covid-19 tests could now be done in Mandera following the launch of a Kenya Medical Research Institute laboratory in the county.
Governor Ali Roba launched the lab at the Mandera County Referral Hospital saying it would not only test Covid-19 but also other viruses.
The county had been relying on transporting samples to Nairobi for testing since the first case was reported in the area on April 5, which was not only costly leading to delays in receiving the results but also, fraught with delays in results being relayed back in a timely manner for decision making by medical personnel.
“Despite all these challenges, we tested 854 people upto August 2020. It is against this background, as well as the fact that Covid 19 is not about to go away any time soon, that we partnered with KEMRI to establish a molecular Laboratory that can test not only Covid 19 but also many other viruses,” Mr Roba said.
He added: “QC/QA validation process has been conducted with the help of KEMRI and NIC which will then lead to sharing of results through the National portal with MOH Hqs in Nairobi.”
Since Sept 26, Mr Roba said, a total of 90 samples have been tested for Covid-19 at Mandera Molecular Lab, with six turning positive and responding well to management and care. This, Mr Roba said, made the total tested cumulatively to 944, with 34 positive, 32 recoveries and two deaths.
Following the fresh increase of Covid-19 cases, Mr Roba vouched for vigilance and up scaling of community interventions as well as personal protection measures to reduce infection transmission.
He said Mandera County Government through the Ministry of Health has put in place 306 isolation beds across the County, with the Mandera Rehabilitation Isolation Center also having a 5-bed ICU dedicated to Covid-19 cases only beside other critical care facilities at Mandera County Referral Hospital and Elwak Sub-County Hospital.
The border county has further recruited more medical personnel, trained all staff and procured enough supplies and equipment to respond to this crisis.
“We will now redouble our efforts in prevention as we have a situation where some students have also been allowed back to school. Covid-19 is still here with us and is a threat that we should not downplay,” Mr Roba said.
He regretted that mosques have relaxed rules, with the congregation not observing the required social distancing of one meter between persons, wearing masks and carrying their own prayer mats.
“I want to caution our people that, it is in the best interest of all, that we must maintain the same level of personal protection of hand washing, wearing masks, social distancing and no shaking hands. We must be cautious of pandemic fatigue as the Covid-19 virus will not tire.”
He said his administration will conduct robust Covid-19 prevention in all schools that have resumed the learning process “and where necessary do testing of any suspected cases.”
He called on residents to take up personal protection as a citizen responsibility “to ensure we remain safe.”
He also urged the public to embrace testing as a way of knowing one’s status and reduce transmission.
The governor hailed the “great effort” of medical personnel during the Covid-19 pandemic.
He said it is through medical personnel effort that Mandera County reduced the spillover of cases from Somalia through heightened surveillance along the porous border, beside topping in Contact tracing nationally and also being the best among the 47 counties for Covid-19 pandemic preparedness and response as assessed.

By | 2020-10-28T15:11:38+03:00 October 19th, 2020|news|0 Comments

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