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A teacher takes the temperature of a student in Embu on October 12, 2020 when schools in Kenya resumed physical learning after a COVID-19 break that started in March.

Capital Health

MoH to start random COVID-19 testing in schools to detect cases

NAIROBI, Kenya Oct 14 – Director of Public Health Dr. Patrick Amoth says the Ministry of Health will soon embark on random testing of COVID-19 in schools to establish if there is a spike in new infections.

In his interactive segment with netizens on Twitter on Wednesday, Dr. Amoth said the government has already put up a surveillance system to monitor any increased cases of COVID-19 after learning institutiions reopened following closure in March.

Physical learning resumed in schools for Grade Four, Class 8 and Form 4 on Monday, two weeks after students in universities and colleges went back.

“The decision to re-open schools in phases was a delicate choice based on surveillance which will continue while schools are open,” he said, and added that special attention had been given to teachers, students and staff with pre-existing conditions to avoid infection within the schools.

While stressing that the country is staring at a possible second wave of infections following the easing of the COVID-19 restriction measures, Dr. Amoth underscored that returning the stricter measures is definitely an option if Kenyans continue to throw caution to the wind.

“If the infection prevention and control measures are not adhered to strictly as stipulated by the government, then a second wave is imminent. However, we hope not to get there,” he said.

Kenya has recorded a sharp decline in new infections since August, eventhough fatalities have been on the increase.

When he opened the economy and eased some of the COVID-19 restrictions on September 27, 2020, President Uhuru Kenyatta had warned that he would not hesitate to re-introduce tougher measures if virus cases surge.

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