Nairobi — Kenya could adopt home-based care protocols for asymptomatic COVID-19 patients as early as next week, the health ministry said on Thursday.
Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe said the move will pave way for the release of asymptomatic COVID-19 patients held at isolation facilities across the country.
He noted that more than 80 percent of patients in hospitals are asymptomatic and will have to be managed at home in order to minimize congestion at health facilities.
"If this is implemented, it will free our health facilities at congestions, because in Nairobi alone, Mbagathi Hospital and Kenyatta University (KU) hospitals are already getting to full capacity, we have already completed the process of actualizing home and community based care protocols," he said.
Acting Director General Patrick Amoth added that the new protocols will facilitate smooth running of hospitals managing COVID-19 patients.
"The home-based care is a key intervention which is approved by World Health Organisation (WHO) and it is meant to prevent hospitals from being overwhelmed," he added.
The CS noted that the ministry is still working on the customization of protocols to ensure conforming to WHO standards.
Kagwe said the government will facilitate community-based care for families unable to conform to home-based care regulations.
"The time has come when we must begin to implement systems in our own place depending on our environment, because it's the way we are going to cope with future expectations," he added.
The Health CS appealed to Kenyans against stigmatizing the patients who will be released for management under home-based care protocols and further urged patients to uphold utmost discipline while undergoing home-based care.
"When people come home and are supposed to be under isolation, it calls for a high degree of discipline that we must adhere to, because if we do adhere to that, we are going to have a problem," the CS stated.
"I am appealing to people that when we see people coming home, they will be of no danger to us and therefore their is no need for stigmatization," he added.