The Covid-19 situation in Nyanza region is rapidly turning into a crisis with hospitals full with Covid-19 patients and many more in isolation with experts warning that unless drastic measures are taken, then the region could become the next epicentre of the disease in the country.
For two days running, the lakeside counties of Siaya and Kisumu have been topping with new cases reported and the positivity rate doubling the national positivity rate.
On Thursday, Kisumu County recorded the highest number of infections in the country at 145 cases, accounting for a third of all infections.
The county recorded an alarming 33 per cent increase in daily cases even as experts moved in to avert a crisis.
Nation reports that as early as “Last week on Sunday, Jaramogi Oginga Odinga Teaching and Referral Hospital was full with 92 patients and private hospitals were also overwhelmed, forcing medics in the county to hold a crisis meeting”.
In neighbouring Homabay, a crisis is unfolding with the county hit by acute oxygen shortage amidst the surge in the number of cases in the county.
This has seen the county reach out for help from its neighbours such as Nyamira and Kisumu with Dr Peter Ogolla, Homa Bay Referral hospital CEO sconfirming that the county is already on the red alert since the hospital is full with no space.
“What is being strained the most is oxygen supply. We are in short supply, if the numbers increase we will be in crisis since we are already overwhelmed. Already, eight of our patients are in high flow of pure oxygen. The demand is high,” he said.
Many have attributed the surge in cases to last week’s joint tour by President Uhuru Kenyatta and ODM party leader Raila Odinga that saw them tour several counties in the region, attracting huge crowds.
DP Ruto was also in Kisumu, attracting a huge crowd and came out to acknowledge their greetings.
Among those who have gone into isolation following the surge in cases in Kisumu is Nyeri Deputy Governor Caroline Karugu who attended the Madaraka Day celebrations in Kisumu County.
She also urged those who attended the event to self-isolate as Covid-19 cases in the region rise.
“With Kisumu recording the highest number of Covid-19 cases, and at a positivity rate of 11 per cent, those of us who visited ought to go into self-quarantine and get tested,” she said.
“I think it is the right and responsible thing to do.” Ms Karugu added.