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Random screening for coronavirus starts in Nairobi – PHOTOS

Random screening for the coronavirus officially kicked off in Nairobi county on Saturday.

A team from the Ministry of Health on Saturday targeted high density areas of Nairobi county and started at Muthurwa and Gikomba markets before stretching out to Tea Room and Machakos bus stops.

Those with temperatures of 38 degrees will have their travel history taken and if necessary referred for further assessment.

Health CS Mutahi Kagwe Kagwe on Thursday said the move was part of the government’s proactive strategy of containing the spread of the viral disease after seven people tested positive for Covid-19.

The CS said the random screening will be targeted to specific areas that are densely populated and this is meant to determine the exact extent of the prevalence of the new virus.

Nairobi county and Health ministry officials on Saturday also began fumigating Gikomba, Muthurwa and Burma open-air markets to curb the spread of the deadly coronavirus.

Some 215 health workers have been deployed across the county for the screening exercise and 200 more who were on leave recalled to boost the existing manpower to tame the fast spreading virus.

Official updates from the government place the total number of confirmed cases at seven still, with a fresh update from the Health CS expected on sunday evening.

Of the seven patients, six are Kenyans and one a Burundian, whom the CS said are “doing well under the observation of the Ministry of Health and Kenyatta National Hospital staff.”

All the cases were imported and the patients are being re-tested to see if they turn negative.

Tests on eight people hospitalised at the Mbagathi Hospital’s isolation facility had turned out negative and were being processed for discharge.

The CS said the government had traced 145 people who came into contact with those who tested positive to ensure they are quarantined to avoid further spread.

“We have screened over 600,000 people who have entered our country from our entry points,” he said.

The health ministry appealed for pubic cooperation, noting that their key role in preventing the virus spread by going to hospital should they experience symptoms and also report suspected cases.

As of Sunday, more than 308,000 Covid-19 cases had been reported worldwide, with more than 13,000 fatalities and more than 95,000 recoveries.

The novel virus has been reported in 183 countries so far.