11.2 C
Monday, July 15, 2024
HomeCommunityKenya on High Alert as Monkeypox Outbreak Spreads in DRC

Kenya on High Alert as Monkeypox Outbreak Spreads in DRC


Related stories

Kenyan Police in Haiti Receive Armored Vehicles and Choppers to Combat Gangs

Kenyan police officers who are fighting gangs in Haiti...

Kenyan Sensation Faith Kipyegon Shatters Own 1,500m World Record at Paris Diamond League

World 1,500m and Mile Record Holder Faith Kipyegon Secures...

Kenya unrest: the deep economic roots that brought Gen-Z onto the streets

By XN Iraki The generation of Kenyans born between 1997...

Romantic breakups can spark severe trauma in young people – new study

By Alberta SJ van der Watt What should I study?...
Reading Time: 2 minutes

In response to the rapidly evolving monkeypox situation in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), the Kenyan government has issued a high-level travel advisory and ramped up its disease surveillance and response capabilities.

The current monkeypox outbreak in the DRC is being driven by a new, more severe variant of the virus, raising concerns about its potential to spread to neighboring countries, including Kenya. According to the Africa Centre for Disease Control and Prevention, the DRC has reported over 8,479 cases and 401 deaths from monkeypox since January 2024, accounting for 97% of the continent’s total cases.

“We have issued an advisory to all counties and all points of entry at the airports, seaports, and ground crossing points outlining how healthcare workers can detect cases through signs and symptoms,” said Ms. Mary Muthoni Muriuki, the Principal Secretary for Public Health and Professional Standards at the Kenyan Ministry of Health. “The border points should pay attention to travelers originating from or transiting through affected countries.”

The ministry has also developed comprehensive surveillance, laboratory, and management guidelines, as well as established technical teams to coordinate the country’s response. This move aims to mitigate the potential adverse effects should the virus be imported into Kenya.

Monkeypox is a zoonotic disease caused by the monkeypox virus, which can be transmitted from animals to humans and through human-to-human contact. The symptoms include a rash, fever, and swollen lymph nodes, such as sore throat. The virus has an incubation period of about 21 days, according to the World Health Organization.

While monkeypox outbreaks are commonly reported in the DRC, the current strain is believed to be a new variant that poses a significant risk of spreading to other African countries. The Eastern region of the DRC, which shares borders with several East African nations, including Rwanda, Uganda, Burundi, and Tanzania, is considered a hotspot for the virus.

“Due to human traffic in and out of the borders, Kenya stands at a high risk of exposure to the virus,” said an expert from the Africa Center for Disease Control.

The Kenyan government has urged the public to maintain high levels of hygiene, avoid contact with wild or domestic animals, and seek immediate medical attention if they develop symptoms. Healthcare workers have also been advised to take appropriate precautions when attending to suspected or confirmed cases.

The lack of sufficient vaccine supplies in African countries remains a significant challenge in controlling the monkeypox outbreak, according to the World Health Organization. The organization recommends the JYNNEOS vaccine, a two-dose regimen, for protection against the virus.

As the situation in the DRC continues to unfold, Kenya’s proactive measures and heightened vigilance aim to prevent the introduction and spread of the monkeypox virus within its borders, safeguarding the health and well-being of its citizens.

About The Author


- Never miss a story with notifications

- Gain full access to our premium content

- Browse free from up to 5 devices at once

Latest stories



Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here