Indepth: Kenya Indepth Report
On December 31st 2019, the Chinese authorities alerted the World Health Organization (WHO) of severe pneumonia cases in Wuhan City, China, with an unknown cause. On 12th March 2020, the Government of Kenya (GOK) through the Ministry of Health (MOH), confirmed the first case of Covid-19 in Nairobi, Kenya. The suspected patient had returned to Kenya from the United States on 5th March via London, UK. After a test was conducted at the National Influenza Centre Laboratory of the National Public Health Laboratories, the case was confirmed. Further tracking and testing of 27 other individuals who had come into contact with the patient were done. Subsequently, the Ministry of Health issued a warning stating that cases would rise exponentially in the coming days, while urging Kenyans to remain calm and follow the established guidelines as issued by the Ministry of Health. According to the Corona Tracker, Kenya has a 1.8% Fatality rate and a 68.8% Recovery rate. These are calculated according to the total number of cases in the county which is at 62,488 cases. To respond to the threat of COVID -19, the Government of Kenya (GOK) established a National Emergency Response Committee on Coronavirus (NERCC) vide Executive Order No. 2 of 2020 and established several technical committees to provide technical support to the NERCC. While the broader contingency plan encompasses many aspects of preparedness and response, the communication and community engagement subcommittee was tasked with the development of the Communication and Community Engagement Strategy for Coronavirus. The overall goal of the strategy is to effectively coordinate national and county communication and community engagement activities to prevent as well as mitigate the spread of the disease, build trust in the leaders and health workers to provide accurate information and essential services and encourage communities’ active participation in supporting risk reduction and response measures.