Kenya discharges 600 COVID-19 patients as home-care system is implemented

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Kenya’s Cabinet Secretary in the Ministry of Health Mutahi Kagwe. COURTESY: Ministry of Health, Kenya

Kenya began implementing its home-based isolation and care guidelines for COVID-19 patients, the Ministry of Health said on Sunday, even as the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in the East African country keeps on rising.

The protocol, launched nearly two weeks ago, was developed to offer a solution in the management of increasing numbers and an anticipated surge in COVID-19 cases.

Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe announced that about 600 patients had so far been discharged from various hospitals across the country to continue their recovery from their homes.

“We have also launched the home-care system by discharging a substantial number of people from hospitals. For example, from Kenyatta University, we have discharged some 338 persons who are positive for home-based care after the 14-day period recommended by the World Health Organisation. From Coast General Hospital, we have discharged some 212 persons and we are still getting reports from hospitals as they discharge these individuals,” Kagwe said.

Earlier this month, the Kenyan government admitted that its health facilities were being overwhelmed by the number of COVID-19 patients and that it planned to have hospitals discharge COVID-19 patients who were asymptomatic to go and recover at home.

According to the Kenyan government, more than 75 percent of infected persons admitted in the country’s hospitals are either asymptomatic or mildly symptomatic and, therefore, can be managed at home provided proper laid down procedures are followed.

The World Health Organisation recommends that any laboratory confirmed COVID-19 case be isolated and cared for in a healthcare facility. It, however, does take note of the fact that not all cases can be cared for at a health facility when cases begin to rise.

On Sunday, Kenya recorded its highest daily increase in COVID-19 cases reporting 260 cases, pushing its nationwide total to 4,738.

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