JMS Update on COVID 19 situation and COVID vaccination exercise
COVID 19 situation in Kenya
As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to spread across the globe, we note that the situation in Kenya has seen a general slowing following the 3rd wave, in most of the country. There are still some areas where the numbers continue to be on the rise, and this is a sign that the disease is still here with us and is yet to be fully controlled.
The COVID test positivity rate currently swings in the range of 5-10%, which is still considered relatively high above the 0 to 5% range that WHO recommends for lifting of the public health restrictions.
Among UN personnel and dependents, we are glad to say that hospital admissions are at a low and we continue to support those who require medical evacuation into the country. We commend you and your dependents for your adherence to precautions which has helped to significantly reduce the burden among the UN in Kenya.
Preventive measures continue to be very important even for those who are partially or fully vaccinated, and stand as vital to contain the spread of the virus. These include:
- Consistent and Correct use of Face covering or Face masks reduces the risk of COVID-19 infection
- Consistent practice of effective Hand hygiene: with alcohol-based hand rub (minimum 60% alcohol) or wash with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Do not touch your face with unwashed hands.
- Physical distancing: Maintain physical distance of at least 2m between yourself and others.
- Respiratory hygiene: Cover your nose and mouth with a bent elbow or paper tissue when coughing or sneezing. Dispose of the tissue immediately after use and perform hand hygiene.
- Avoid Poorly ventilated spaces: Even with physical distancing, such spaces can provide greater opportunity for virus circulation and infection. We should limit our time in such settings and maintain face coverings in addition to practicing other recommended public health measures.
- Stay home if unwell: This action can help prevent the spread of COVID-19 at work or in private settings. Contact JMS on the below address to seek advice and discuss concerns or possible COVID-19 Symptoms. Inform your supervisor that you will be staying at home and seek medical assistance.
These measures are even more vital now with the projections being made of a possible 4th wave in the coming months, due to the low vaccination rate in the country. We do hope that this does not come to pass.
COVID 19 vaccination at JMS
Vaccinations are a significant milestone in the fight against the pandemic. Since the beginning of the vaccination campaign in Kenya we have been supported by the Kenya government and the UN System wide program to provide vaccines to personnel and their eligible dependents. The uptake of vaccine among the UN family is encouraging and it is acknowledged that not everyone has received vaccine yet. It is the organization’s aim to vaccinate everyone.
Several colleagues received their 1st dose in March/ April from the government vaccination initiative, and are now due for their 2nd dose following completion of the 12-week interval. Information is that the government vaccination center does not have vaccines for now. Some colleagues are receiving text message invitations from the MOH-Chanjo platform for the 2nd dose, and our expectation is that these will be honored as soon as government receives more vaccine shipments.
The UN-led vaccination exercise is ongoing at JMS. The priority category has since been expanded to include 2nd doses for those who are registered and invited via the Everbridge platform, and received their booking confirmation. Our advice is that all personnel should register in the platform, together with their eligible dependents and wait to be invited. Once invited, proceed to accept the invitation and wait for a booking confirmation. When received, honor your appointment so that you get your dose at the earliest opportunity. If you miss your appointment for any reason, you may drop in at your next availability for vaccination subject to availability.
As we continue in efforts to vaccinate staff and their dependents, we encourage anyone with challenges in or following registration in Everbridge, to contact the UNON COVID Vaccination hotline for assistance at firstname.lastname@example.org or call +254 20 762 1717 between 8am – 5pm on Monday to Friday
Keep Healthy and Stay Safe!