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Kirinyaga Focus on Covid-19 Prevention as Schools Reopen 

Kirinyaga County Government is focusing its Covid-19 prevention campaigns on schools as they reopen amid the pandemic to ensure that there is no rise in the spread of the virus.

The County’s Department of Health has already held meetings with education officials from both national and county governments where expectations and matters regarding the reopening was discussed.

The County Executive Committee Member (CEC) for health, Gladys Kimingi, has said that in order to contain spread of the virus, continuous sensitization in schools as well as monitoring to ensure that the laid down guidelines are followed will be carried out.

This will complement the campaigns that were carried out in schools during the last term’s partial reopening.

The CEC said that so far about 200 teachers have been reached while students from about 60 schools have been sensitized in the past month when the county’s department of health embarked on an accelerated Covid-19 prevention campaign around the county.

Public health employees in an exercise to sensitize students on how to clean their hands properly before going to class

She added that the county government has linked all the schools with health workers who will be in contact with the schools from time to time offering the required guidance as well as ensuring that they followed the guidelines issued by the Ministry of Health which includes wearing masks and washing of hands among others.

“Apart from sensitizing teachers and students, roles of other staff in the schools such as watchmen, cooks, groundsmen have been well stipulated so that they all play their part in the prevention of the Covid-19 in the schools,” she said.

She said the health department has also come up with a reporting template for Covid-19 suspected cases in schools which are supposed to be filled by school heads and submitted to the Sub-county Covid-19 Multiagency Team through the Sub County Public Health Officer.

“The template captures the detail of the student, the symptoms exhibited and the facility they were referred to,” Kimingi said.

She said that any student suspected to have Covid-19 should be taken to the nearest health facility where they will be reviewed and referred accordingly should they meet the case definition for the disease.

The CEC also said that pupils from ECDE centers will benefit from free face masks in a consignment of 140,000 masks set to be distributed by the county government to school children. The masks are produced by the Department of Gender at the county’s Kaitheri Apparel Factory in Kerugoya.

Dr. Kimingi urged schools staff, parents and pupils to play their part in the prevention of the spread of the virus both in school and outside the school.

Kirinyaga County has so far recorded a total of 476 positive cases of Covid-19 and seven deaths.

            A total of 21 patients have so far recovered from the isolation center while others have recovered under the Home Based Care program. Currently, there is no patient admitted at the isolation center while 4 are recovering at home based care.

By Irungu Mwangi

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