Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe has admitted that a number of personal protective equipment imported by the government had fallen short of required quality standards.
Speaking in Machakos County on Friday, May 22, he stated that following the observation, Kenya would no longer be importing PPEs and would instead make them locally, to ensure that they were of superior quality.
“Some of the equipment is clearly below standard. The ones we are making locally are superior to those that we were importing before,” he told the press.
Medics have been raising concerns about the Ministry of Health’s commitment to safeguarding them from the deadly virus. Being front line workers against Covid-19, medics have in many occasions demanded better protective gears of world-class standards.
Many times they have been left at the mercy of God, with CS Kagwe saying “Thanks to God our doctors have not been falling sick.”
By May 8, 34 health workers had been infected with Coronavirus.
“34 health workers have tested positive for the virus either directly at their places of work or indirectly. Like I know of a doctor who had tested positive after he visited a friend who had the virus,” Ministry of Health DG Patrick Amoth stated during a briefing at Afya House.
“We have not had any death of a health worker. They are at the forefront fighting the disease, putting them at the greatest risk of contracting the virus from the patients that they serve,” he added.
On April 30, the Kenya Covid-19 fund announced that it would prioritise the purchase of personal protective equipment (PPE) worth Ksh 600 million.
On May 5, A nurse in Meru was forced to improvise personal protective equipment (PPE) from a plastic garbage bag before attending to a patient suspected of suffering from Covid-19.
Daily Nation independently verified that incident happened at Miathene Sub-County Hospital in Tigania West.
On April 11 2020, the Kenya Union of Clinical Officers had threatened to down their tools if the national government did not guarantee the safety of medical practitioners fighting Covid-19.
KUCO Secretary-General George Dibore warned that the union would withdraw their services if the workers would not be protected.
The Health CS, while receiving a donation of Covid-19 equipment from Chinese billionaire Jack Ma, promised that Kenya would test all supplies to determine the quality before rolling out to hospitals.