Use of masks and handwashing should continue and be embraced as a lifestyle to reduce the spread of flu including Covid-19.
These are part of the resolutions adapted by medical experts during an international conference hosted in Nairobi to commemorate the experience of Covid-19 and take stock of best practices and lessons.
The conference held at Kenyatta University between April 12 and 14 was organised by the institution’s School of Public Health and the Ministry of Health, Kenya.
At the same time the parley has called for a multi-sectoral action and inclusive approach to health promotion.
The medics underscored the role of Health Promotion Officers who play a key role to accelerate the uptake of Covid-19 vaccine through awareness creation. Equally, the delegates acknowledged the critical role of the Bunge YaMwanachi,political leaders, artists and community elders to mobilize and communicate to communities.
Whereas Kenya has made remarkable success in the control of the spread of Covid-19, the medics regretted that the country is yet to achieve vaccination targets. The efficacy of the Covid-19 has determined that vaccines increase protection from the virus.
The general populace, the conference stated, was not safe unless every individual is vaccinated.
The conference took place as experts continued to express concern over the low uptake of Covid-19 vaccines in the country, a situation that has been partly blamed on the easing of containment measures by the Health Ministry among other factors.
Of greater concern is that despite the efforts to ensure the Kenyan population is vaccinated against the virus, factors such as the drought in parts of the country and food insecurity, conflict continues to impact vaccine uptake negatively.
“Today we see encouraging signs of declining cases of Covid-19 globally but we cannot forget the fragility of our health system and the need to increase our resilience so that we can protect ourselves from potential disruptions that are still a reality,” Kenya’s First Lady Margaret said.She spoke during the official opening of the Conference at Kenyatta University.
Kenya Red Cross Society Secretary-General Asha Mohammed called for an integrated approach that allows stakeholders to respond to emergencies while conducting vaccination drives.
According to Mohammed, the negative impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on people’s health and livelihoods cannot be overstated.
“The pandemic has tested our resilience at a time when most of our communities are already stressed by climate change, economic slowdown, and in particular today’s drought which has left nearly 3.5 million people across the country food insecure,” Aisha said.