State bans importation of vaccines as 1,851 more test positive

State bans importation of vaccines as 1,851 more test positive

What you need to know:

  • Health CS Mutahi Kagwe said that 363 more patients have recovered from the virus.
  • Ministry also reported 19 more deaths in the last 24 hours, which have pushed cumulative fatalities in the country to 2,186.

The government has banned the importation, distribution and administration of vaccines by the private sector, citing transparency issues.

The announcement was made on Friday by Cabinet Secretary for Health Mutahi Kagwe, who also gave the latest updates of Covid-19 in the country.

This is one of the nine recommendations made by the National Emergency Response Committee after a meeting on Friday April 2, 2021. 

The private sector will therefore not receive any form of licensing to allow them to vaccinate people in the country. The existing licences of operation have also been revoked. 

“There will be no licensing of private players in the importation of vaccines and any such license given will be and is hereby terminated. The only agent for vaccination in Kenya will remain the government of the republic of Kenya until further notice," Mr Kagwe said.

He further warned that anyone offering Covid-19 vaccines at a fee contravenes Pharmacy and Poisons Board regulations and risks prosecution.

“The participation of the private sector in the vaccination exercise now threatens the gains made in the fight against Covid-19 across the country,” he added.  

Emergency authorisation

The government says the ban has been informed by a number of emerging issues such as prevention of future distribution of counterfeit vaccines that will be administered to its people.

“In as much as we care for other people’s property, the safety of Kenyans must be made supreme during this vaccination exercise,” said Mr Kagwe.

The private sector has also been accused of going against the emergency authorisation use guidelines where, unlike market authorisation, they were not supposed to advertise their vaccines.

Dr Patrick Amoth, the acting Director General for Health, clarified that those who have already gotten their first dose of Sputnik V - a privately imported vaccine from Russia - are assured of their second jabs despite the new rules on private imports. 

The CS announced that confirmed Covid-19 cases in the country now stand at 136,893 after 1,851 new cases were reported in last 24 hours from 9,676 samples that were tested.

Cumulative tests that have been conducted in the country is now at 1,504,453, while the country’s Covid-19 positivity rate stands at 19.1 per cent, the CS said.

From the new infections, 1,767 are Kenyans while 84 are foreigners, with 991 being male and 860 being female.

More deaths reported

Kagwe also said that 363 more patients have recovered from the virus, 215 from home-based care isolation and 148 from various health facilities. The total recoveries in the country now stand at 93,430.

At the same time, the ministry also reported 19 more deaths in the last 24 hours, which have pushed cumulative fatalities in the country to 2,186.

According to the CS, 1,597 patients had been hospitalised by Friday, with 185 of them being under intensive care. Of those in ICU, 43 were on ventilatory support, 106 on supplemental oxygen and 36 under observation.

Another 246 patients were separately on supplemental oxygen, 234 of them being in general wards and 12 in high dependency units.

The number of patients in the home-based care programme stood at 4,943.

Nairobi county continues to lead with the number of infections per county with 796 new infcetions followed by Kiambu 151, Mombasa 106, Uasin Gishu 83, Nakuru 79, Machakos 52, Nyandarua 44, Kisumu 38, Kilifi 37, Kitui 36, Meru 35, Kericho 34, Kajiado 33, Bungoma 32, Trans Nzoia 25, , Embu 22, Kakamega 19, Murang’a 17, Kirinyaga 14, Mandera 14,Kirinyaga 14, Mandera 14, Makueni 13, West Pokot 11 and Siaya 11.

More new cases were reported in Nandi 10, Busia 9, Laikipia 7, Isiolo 6, Kisii 6, Bomet 6, Kwale 5, Baringo 4, Migori 4, Taita Taveta 4, Garissa 3, Turkana 3, Nyeri 3 and Marsabit 2, 
Samburu, Tharaka Nithi, Narok and Elgeyo Marakwet each registered single cases.

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