Kakamega Governor Wycliffe Oparanya has urged the government to certify the County’s Covid-19 testing capacity and make it a testing centre. He said the region has a low testing capacity, with samples mainly sent to Kisumu or Eldoret’s MTRH for Covid-19 testing, “I have submitted two requests to your office (health ministry) to consider making Kakamega a testing centre,” he said. He was speaking during Health CS Mutahi Kagwe’s visit to the County to assess the level of preparedness to handle Coronavirus cases. He said at the moment Kakamega has machines for testing, which can be calibrated to test Covid-19 but what they lack are reagents.
He said so far 629 samples from Kakamega have been tested, out of which 596 were negative and 33 positive. 28 have been treated and discharged, and 2 are in a health facility while 3 are under the home based care program. 2 patients have succumbed to the virus in the County so far. 3 designated ambulances have been set aside to enhance response to Covid-19 cases and 4,000 community health workers have been trained so far in partnership with the Kenya Red Cross.
On his part, Health CS Kagwe lauded the County for its preparedness efforts, notably its still-to-be completed referral hospital structure. He said the fact that the County government could set up such a structure points to devolution gains, “It’s very unlikely that managed from the centre, that is the health management system, we would’ve have this hospital behind us.”