Kenya: 2 Isiolo Medics Test Positive for Covid-19, Contract Tracing On

An official from the Nairobi Health Department disinfects a street in fight against the new coronavirus.

Two nurses based at a referral hospital in Isiolo town have tested positive for Covid-19, bringing the county's total number of reported cases to 14.

One of the cases was announced last Saturday and the other on Monday, raising fears among health workers who get exposed as they attend to patients.

One of the nurses runs a private chemist in the town.

A health worker at the hospital, who did not want to be named, said they were shocked and fearful of the risk of infection.

"The news is heartbreaking because one of the patients is a colleague I have been interacting with. I fear taking the test," the worker said.

SAMPLE COLLECTION

Isiolo Health Executive Wario Galma said samples for testing would be collected from the other health workers in the hospital, who would be asked to self-isolate for the mandatory 14 days.

"We will, from Tuesday, start taking samples from the staff while we trace the patients' contacts," Mr Galma told the Nation on phone.

He added that members of the county's health management team were tested and found not to have the virus.

Isiolo reported its first Covid-19 case in May and has since tested a total of 717 samples, with results for 91 pending.

Some 278 people out of the tested number were the contacts of 12 patients. Eight of the 12 were discharged after recovering.

TRAINING

Meanwhile, at least 1,140 health staff, including community health volunteers, have been trained on how to handle coronavirus cases, according to Health Chief Officer Ibrahim Alio.

He said stakeholders' training was ongoing and that surveillance was in top gear to ensure all reported cases are quickly handled.

Mr Alio said the county, with 85 isolation beds, had enough personal protective equipment for health workers at all public hospitals and for those handling Covid-19 patients.

The official complained about the public's failure to observe health protocols, saying that many were no longer wearing masks and observing physical and social distancing.

He encouraged residents to report incidents using emergency toll free numbers.

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