Inside Govt Plan to Prevent Theft of Covid-19 Vaccines

Health CS Mutahi Kagwe addressing the Nation about Corona Virus outside Afya House on March 17, 2020.
Health CS Mutahi Kagwe addressing the Nation about Corona Virus outside Afya House on March 17, 2020.
Simon Kiragu

As the first batch of the Covid-19 vaccine arrives in the country on Wednesday 3, the government has set up systems to prevent theft of the crucial vaccines. 

The Head of Covid-19 vaccine advisory taskforce Chairman Willis Akhwale stated that the imported vaccines would be easily traced once they arrive in the country.

"The batches will be equipped with barcodes that will help in serialisation and traceability of the vaccines," he explained.

He, however, revealed that once the batches are open and individual vials removed, the Ministry would not have the capacity to track the individual doses.

Covid- 19 Vaccine
AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine

During an earlier briefing, Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe stated that the first batch of the vaccine would comprise 1.02 million doses, with the second batch expected in the country in May 2021. Ultimately Kenya will import 24 million doses.

Kenya procured the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine where a dose goes for Ksh768.39, fully catered by the government.

During an interview on Monday, March 1, Health PS Susan Mochache stated that Kenya would spend KSh. 14 Billion in the first phase of Covid-19 vaccination.

The vaccines once cleared at the port will be transferred to Central Vaccines stores in Kitengela, and subsequently to the nine regional depots across the country.

Other depots are in Nyeri, Meru, Nairobi, Nakuru, Eldoret, Kakamega, Kisumu and Garissa.

"The distribution of the vaccines will be done gradually commencing with Level four hospitals and Referral Hospitals across all the counties," she stated.

The vaccine comprises of two doses with the second expected to be taken eight weeks after the first.PS Mochache noted that with the first batch, the government was targetting 500,000 people, starting with front-line workers.

"Minors, pregnant women and people allergic to eggs and chicken are not eligible for Covid-19 vaccination," she disclosed.

An image of Susan Mochache
Ministry of Health Principal Secretary Susan Mochache speaking at a past event.