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Health CAS Mercy Mwangangi addressing a press conference on COVID-19, accompanied by top ministry officials on April 29, 2020.

Capital Health

Govt warns against stigmatization of COVID-19 recovered patients

NAIROBI, Kenya Apr 28 – The government has made a clarion call to Kenyans to warmly accept all the coronavirus recovered patients back into society after many faced stigmatisation.

Health Chief Administrative Secretary Mercy Mwangangi made the appeal on Wednesday, saying the Ministry had received numerous complaints.

“We are disturbed that re-integration has not been easy for these people. This is unfortunate considering our constant appeal and massive education to ensure that they are accepted back in the community,” she said during the daily news briefing on COVID-19.

Kenya has so far registered 384 infections, 10 deaths and 126 recoveries from COVID-19.

Globally, the number of infections topped 3 million Tuesday, with more than 200,000 deaths, with 14 from Kenya. There are 374 cases of infection.

The Kenyan government has warned that the continued profiling and stigmatization of the recovered patients would slow efforts in the fight against the virus.

Of concern by the government, is that there would be a decline in the number of people who are willing to come forward and be tested for COVID-19 for fear of facing the same fate.

She cited an incident where a recovered male patient painfully narrated his ordeal to the ministry officials on how he was subjected to shame upon recovery by members of his community.

“The only way we can be able to beat this disease is if we avoid issues of stigmatization. Stigmatization will frustrate the efforts the government is putting in place to ensure the curve is flattened,” she said.

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Cases of recovered patients being profiled and shamed has spiked in recent days with the government now opting to partner with a few of the recovered patients in sensitizing members of the public that there is no dishonor in being infected by the disease.


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