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CS Health Mutahi Kagwe/FILE/MoH, Kenya

Capital Health

COVID positivity rate shoots up to 26.6pc with 902 cases

Kagwe also reported 18 virus-related deaths which he noted were fatalities that occurred on diverse dates but whose verification delayed.

NAIROBI, Kenya, Mar 29 – The country’s COVID-19 positivity rate on Monday rose to 26.6 per cent after 902 cases were reported from 3,395 samples tested within 24 hours0.

Nairobi remained the hardest hit county with 707 cases, followed by Nakuru (40), Uasin Gishu (39), Machakos (29), Kiambu (21) and Kajiado (21).

Kagwe also reported 18 virus-related deaths which he noted were fatalities that occurred on diverse dates but whose verification delayed.

The country’s death toll rose to 2,135.

He reported the recovery of 407 patients, including 237 who were under home based care raising total recoveries to 92,161.

The number of COVID patients admitted in hospitals across the country shot up to 1,270. Another 4,620 patients were on home based isolation and care.

“The numbers in the Intensive Care Unit have also gone up to 137, 36 of them on ventilatory support and 91 on supplemental oxygen,” Kagwe explained.

He said 90 other patients were separately on supplementary oxygen, 78 of them in general wards while 12 others were in the High Dependency Unit.

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CS Kagwe appealed to Kenyans holding oxygen cylinders to return them to manufacturers for refill, amid a surging demand which he noted had doubled to 880 tonnes.

“Kagwe said it’s unfortunate that there are about 20,000 oxygen cylinders are out there, when they can be used to save lives,” he stated during an address earlier in the day.

While pleading with Kenyans to return the cylinders, Kagwe explained that they are costly to replace with a single cylinder costing Sh40,000. 

“I appeal to those holding cylinders please return them to manufacturers so they can refill and use them in hospitals that need them, remember oxygen is not just a precious commodity in the fight against the virus, it can actually mean life and death for our people,” Kagwe said.

He also noted the need to increase piping of oxygen to hospitals, so as to maximize the use of the cylinders. 

According to the CS, there are 73 oxygen plants in the country, some of which are not operational.

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