By Samuel Ouma
The Ministry of Health in Kenya on Wednesday announced that it discovered five cases of the Indian Covid-19 variant.
The cases were picked from Indian working on a fertilizer plant in the lake city of Kisumu last week, said the Health Ministry’s Director-General, Dr. Patrick Amoth.
“Indian variant, yes, this variant has been picked in Kenya and because of global connectivity, it is just a question of time. You cannot be able to place barriers to prevent a virus from accessing your territory,” Amoth said.
Last week the East African nation suspended all passenger flights to and from India for 14 days due to a surge in coronavirus cases in the South Asian country.
The move took effect at midnight on Saturday, May 1, 2021.
On Wednesday, the country announced 489 new cases raising the total number of confirmed cases to 161 393.
The new cases were picked from 4426 samples tested in the last 24 hours, with the country’s positivity rate doubling from 5.2 percent on Tuesday to 11 percent.
Out of the 489, 449 were Kenyans and 40 foreign nations aged between four months and 102 years.
In terms of gender, 266 were males and 223 females.
The Chief Administrative Secretary in the Health Ministry, Dr. Rashid Aman, said 20 more patients succumbed to the virus bringing the total number of deaths to 2825. Eleven of the deaths were reported on diverse dates, while nine are late deaths reports from health facilities audits.
At the same time, Dr. Aman announced 552 recoveries increasing the number of recoveries to 109,789.
Meanwhile, 1164 patients are admitted to various health facilities countrywide and 6603 in the Home-Based and Isolation Care.
One hundred fifty-three patients are now in ICU, 28 of whom are on ventilator support, 99 on supplemental oxygen, and another 26 under observation.