COVID-19 Update: Stay Vigilant, Get your vaccine!

12 Aug 2021

The COVID-19 pandemic is once again showing signs of rapid advancement in Kenya.

During the period between March 2021 to April 2021, we witnessed the peak of the ‘’third wave’’ of COVID-19 infections in Kenya. Since then, the average week to week positivity rates have remained consistently above 5%. Globally, many countries are experiencing worsening infection trends driven by the spread of the Delta variant.  

In Kenya, a concerning trend has emerged. The daily average number of new COVID-19 infections reported in Kenya over the last three weeks has risen by more than 400 with about 800 new cases recorded as a daily average during the last week. 

The upward trend of infections has not spared the UN family in Kenya. There has been an increase in new cases amongst UN personnel and dependents in the month of July, compared to the month of June.  

 

What are we to make of the current worrying trend of infections in the background of a sub-optimal vaccination rate?  Consider the following questions and how they apply to you , your family and community:   

  • Is there a problem of complacency in adhering to COVID-19 preventive measures? Might you be letting your guard down? Have you observed National or local social trends that could be contributing to the rising infection rate?   
  • Does partial or full COVID-19 vaccination give us the license to practice high risk behavior even as most eligible adults remain unvaccinated in Kenya?  
  • Might we be allowing vaccine hesitancy to increase our risk of exposure to COVID-19 with possible hospitalization and death? 
  •  

Vaccination against COVID-19 remains our most reliable tool to control the pandemic and to reduce individual risk of severe disease and death. We encourage those who have not taken the vaccine to take full advantage of the current availability of UN-procured Astra Zeneca Vaccines at UNON Gigiri in Nairobi and at Dadaab and Kakuma duty stations. Adult dependents are also highly encouraged to take up their COVID-19 vaccines. JMS is still administering first doses of the Astra Zeneca COVID vaccine as well as second doses when they fall due.  

 We also encourage those who still have lingering concerns about COVID-19 vaccination to speak to their physician and to reach out to JMS. This will help in making an informed choice. 

Notwithstanding the importance of COVID-19 vaccination, it is important that all persons continue to observe the recommended COVID-19 preventive measures even when they are fully vaccinated. There remains a possibility of breakthrough COVID-19 infections, even if these do not commonly lead to hospitalization and death. 

As a UN family, it is crucial that we maintain our vigilance against COVID-19. It is also important that we rely on accurate information on COVID-19 and do our part to bring the pandemic under control through vaccination and consistent practice of the essential preventative measures.  

KEEP HEALTHY & SAFE!  

Report COVID-19 Illness to JMS on the 24/7contacts: Tel: +254 724 255 378, Emailunon-jms-medicalevacuation@un.org Staff counseling service: Tel: +254 728 961 939 or + 254 793 484 333 

Useful Links: WHO-COVID-19 ; JMS website ; What to do when ill Mental health & wellbeing 

Posted on: 12 Aug 2021