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Kenya medics decry lack of COVID vaccines

Doctors who were required to take their 2nd Covishield shot turning up at hospitals and reporting lack of vaccines

Andrew Wasike   | 17.06.2021
Kenya medics decry lack of COVID vaccines

NAIROBI, Kenya

Kenya’s frontline workers, mostly doctors, have come out publicly to complain about missing their second dose appointments for a COVID vaccine due to a shortage in the East African country.

Medical practitioners under the Kenya Medical Practitioners and Dentists Union (KMPDU) say that despite being alerted to come for their second jabs, they reported to vaccination centers numerous times only to be turned away due to a lack of the second dose.

“We are getting messages to go get the vaccine done at various facilities. However, when we get there, the jab is not available,” the KMPDU said in a statement to Kenya’s Ministry of Health.

The ministry replied Wednesday and acknowledged the shortage of vaccines to frontline workers, saying it is doing all it can to secure them.

“As was the case with the first dose, doctors and other health workers will be given priority. In the meantime, the ministry wishes to request doctors, other health workers and those Kenyans due for the second dose to be patient.”

It reassured doctors, health workers and Kenyans who are eligible for the second dose of the Covishield vaccine, a version of the AstraZeneca vaccine that is manufactured by the Serum Institute of India, that they will get their due doses as soon as they become available.​​​​​​​

On Wednesday, 485 people tested positive for the disease from a sample size of 5,355 tested in the last 24 hours. The positivity rate stands at 9.1%. Total confirmed positive cases are now 176,622 and cumulative tests so far conducted total 1,881,460.

There were no COVID-19 deaths recorded in Kenya on Wednesday, with cumulative fatalities remaining at 3,428.

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