The country has been on the lookout following the outbreak of Ebola Viral Disease in Uganda a few weeks ago. Immediately after the case was reported in Uganda, the government through the Ministry of Health assured Kenyans that they are ready to prevent the dangerous disease from entering the country especially through Busia border and put up a few measures to ensure everything is under control.
“We have heightened our surveillance system especially at our border points, by screening all
travelers coming from Uganda, especially the truck drivers and people who are crossing the
border…” Dr. Amoth Patrick, Health Director General, said.

Dr. Amoth again said that the Ministry doesn’t have the capacity to offer surveillance to the entire border and so it will be hard to monitor the border effectively.
“Even if you talk about surveillance, as a ministry we don’t have capacity to offer surveillance to all the entire border between Kenya and Uganda,” he said.

However, the Kenya Medical Practitioners, Pharmacists and Dentists Union (KMPDU) have raised their concerns about the readiness of the country concerning the Ebola disease. They dismissed claims by the Ministry of Health that the country is ready. They said that if the disease hits Kenya right now, many people will die.

In a conference in Nairobi, the union used the example of the suspected case that was reported last week in Mumias, Kakamega county and how the issue was handled. They complained that the issue was handled lightly and with a lot of delay. This implies that we are not ready at all!

They complained again that many hospitals are not equipped with the necessary equipment that can be used to contain the Ebola patients just in case one is diagnosed with it. This is so worrying according to them.

They also talked about awareness of the public concerning the Ebola matter. It is evident that many people still don’t know a lot about the fatal disease: signs and symptoms, means of transmission, what to do when one suspects that he/she or someone else has the virus, cautions to be taken and many more.

They said that it is better for the government through the Ministry of Health to equip hospitals first with the necessary effective equipment that can help contain the viral disease or the patient. They also want the government to train health workers concerning everything about Ebola so as to know how to handle any Ebola situation.

They suggested that the government should also create awareness to the public about Ebola through the effective means possible, like campaigns, so that the public can understand the danger nature of the disease.

By Calvin Angatia


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