Counties in Western Kenya are grappling with lack of oxygen for patients admitted in various hospitals with Covid-19 disease.

The World Health Organization has cited shortage of medical personnel and equipment as major challenges facing the continent in the fight against the spread of Covid-19.

According to the UN agency, despite the low infection rates in Africa, cases of fatality among critically ill patients admitted in ICUs was higher compared to Europe.

This comes at a time when several counties in Western Kenya are grappling with lack of oxygen for patients admitted in various hospitals with Covid-19 disease.

Hospitals have been forced to procure oxygen from neighboring counties after getting overwhelmed by the raging Delta variant.

According to WHO Disease Prevention and Control Officer Dr Joyce Onsongo, the capacities of many of the countries in Africa to manage Covid-19 cases had been overstretched.

She noted that the Critical Care Outcomes study showed a case fatality rate of 48.2 per cent among critically ill Covid-19 patients admitted to ICU in the region. “This is about 11-23 excess deaths per 100 patients, when compared to the global average of about 31.5 per cent,” she said.

Dr Onsongo has therefore called for a need to improve the access to and quality of care for Covid-19 patients in the region, particularly the critical cases.

Read also: China dismisses WHO call for second Covid-19 origin probe

As per the current data, the continent has over six million confirmed Covid-19 cases with over 152,000 deaths and a case fatality ratio of 2.7 per cent.

Meanwhile, Kenya’s death toll has hit 3,826 after 15 more patients succumbed to the virus from the latest data by the Ministry of Health.

In the last 24 hours, the country reported 801 positive cases from a test done on a sample size of 5,850 posting a positivity rate of 13.7 per cent. Total confirmed positive cases are now 195,111 and cumulative tests so far conducted are 2,074,610.

Further, 481 patients have recovered with 322 from the home-based isolation & care program while 159 from various health facilities. Total recoveries now stand at 184,461; 147,158 are from the home based care & isolation program, while 37,303 are from various health facilities.

1,248 patients are currently admitted in various health facilities, while 3,862 are under the home-based isolation and care program. 135 patients are in the ICU,38 of whom are on ventilatory support and 70 on supplemental oxygen. 27 patients are under observation.

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