Storage Concerns as Covid Vaccines Arrive Next Week

  • Covid- 19 Vaccine
    AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine
  • Health Cabinet Secretary, Mutahi Kagwe has moved to assure Kenyans over growing concerns regarding the storage of the Covid-19 vaccines which are set to arrive next week and will require special freezers to remain useful. 

    On Thursday, February 25 Kagwe refuted media reports that his ministry had requested the National Treasury for funds to acquire Covid-19 vaccine freezers worth Ksh1.4 billion.

    He insisted that the country already had enough capacity to store the vaccines and distribute them around the country. 

    ''It's not true, we have enough capacity. check the supplementary budget,’’ said CS Kagwe.

    A spotcheck by found the supplementary budget remains more or less the same with only slight upward adjustments probably to cater for inflationary trends.

    Health CS Mutahi Kagwe during a press briefing in May 2020.
    Health CS Mutahi Kagwe during a press briefing in May 2020.

    There are no significant changes made towards revamping referral hospitals neither to boost research in KEMRI nor for mass recruitment of healthcare workers.

    On Thursday, February 25, local dailies reported that the Ministry of Health has requested Ksh1.4 billion for Covid-19 Vaccine freezers in preparation to receive the first batch of vaccines next week.

    On the same day, the Cabinet had its first sitting for this year where they discussed the distribution plan of the first batch of the vaccine that will be received into the country next week.

    AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine was cleared by the Kenya's Pharmacy and Poisons Board -paving way for the roll-out of the vaccine in the country.

    AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine was submitted to the board which cleared it as fit for use for the public. 

    The clinical trial on the AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine was done at the Kenya Medical Research Institute (KEMRI) Wellcome Trust.

    The vaccination will be conducted in three phases; the first face will comprise 1.2 million frontline workers which will go for six months.

    The second face will cover 5.1 million Kenyans above the age of 50 years and the third face will target 5.2 million Kenyans who have chronic illnesses.

    An image of Raila Odinga
    Former Prime Minister Raila Odinga taking a Covid-19 test at Kemri in Mbagathi on Sunday 14 June 2020.