Kenya on Monday received a second consignment of 880,000 doses of Moderna vaccine from the US as the country’s jab receipts crossed the five million mark.
The donation came days after Nairobi received 141,600 doses of Johnson and Johnson vaccine it procured from the African Union (AU) and another batch of 55,000 doses donated by Latvia over the weekend.
The total number of Covid-19 vaccines received by the Health ministry so far stands at 5,146,710 and there are more deliveries expected in the coming weeks.
The ministry yesterday disclosed to the Nation that it was expecting two million doses of Sinopharm vaccine donated by China.
“We have been promised around 1.8 million doses of Pfizer by the US. We will also be getting 300,000 doses of AstraZeneca doses which will be donated by Spain and 200,000 doses of AstraZeneca from Poland,” the ministry explained in response to queries fielded by Nation.
The jabs have been pouring in as Kenya grapples with a resurgent Delta variant that has hit communities in towns and villages, leaving death in its wake.
As of yesterday, 4,795 people had succumbed to Covid-19. More than 1,825 patients were admitted to various health facilities countrywide, while 4,546 are under the home-based isolation and care programme.
A member of the Covid-19 vaccine task force told the Nation that they were planning to ramp up jabbing by training more health workers as the country battles to stop possible expiry of the vaccines.
“The plan is to increase the number of vaccination sites from 800 to 3,000 with a view of vaccinating 10 million Kenyans by the end of the year,” said the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity as he is not authorised to issue press statements.
As of Sunday, the country had administered a total of 2,870,392 doses. Of these, total first doses are 2,057,080 while second doses are 813,312. The uptake of the second dose was at 39.5 per cent, with the majority being males at 55 per cent while the proportion of adults fully vaccinated was three per cent.
To avoid losses, the ministry said it would embark on upgrading and installation of a new cold chain system.
“We have to ensure that the quantities we receive are well stored in our various depots across the country and that the distribution runs smoothly,” the ministry said in a statement.
Although Pfizer and Moderna are mRNA vaccines, they require different storage conditions.
The Pfizer vaccine must be stored under ultra-low temperatures within -90 degrees and -60 degrees Celsius while Moderna is stored at -20 degrees Celsius.
From the regional depots, Kenya employs a mixed approach to deliver vaccines to various counties. Some counties pick their batch from the nearest regional depots while others like Kisumu, Mombasa and Kilifi have the jabs delivered to them by air.
As per the government’s official vaccines deployment and vaccination plan, distribution follows existing distribution patterns, from national to sub-county levels.
The national and regional depots are located in Eldoret (Baringo, Elgeyo -Marakwet, Nandi, Trans Nzoia, Turkana, Uasin Gishu and West Pokot); Kakamega (Bungoma, Busia, Kakamega and Vihiga); Meru (Isiolo, Marsabit, Meru, and Tharaka Nithi) and Kisumu (Homabay , Migori, Kisumu , Nyamira and Siaya ).
Others are Nyeri ( Embu , Kirinyaga , Laikipia and Nyeri) , Garissa ( Wajir , Mandera and Garissa ); Nakuru ( Bomet , Kericho , Nakuru, Nyandarua and Samburu ); Nairobi ( Kajiado, Kiambu , Kitui , Machakos , Makueni , Murang’a,Nairobi and Narok ) and Mombasa ( Kilifi, Kwale , Lamu , Mombasa , Taita Taveta and Tana River ) . —DailyNation