The Association of Kenya Medical Laboratory Scientific Officers (AKMLSO) has advocated for extensive COVID-19 testing to present a complete picture of the country’s disease positivity rate.
The present positive rate, according to AKMLSO National Executive Chairman Safari Kithi, is based on results from target groups and so cannot provide a complete picture of the country’s position.
He explained that determining the prevalence rate of an illness involves extensive research, including the collection of adequate information from the study population.
Kithi argues that because COVID-19 is still a threat to global health systems, the government must move promptly and conduct extensive testing to implement the essential standards to control the disease.
He stated that the government had received a large number of reagents and testing kits from the donor community, but that they were deteriorating in storage as the country faced a new epidemic of the disease.
“During the pandemic, the government purchased a huge number of rapid and molecular testing kits, which must be used to do these mass tests to gain an accurate picture of the disease’s spread across the country,” he explained.
Speaking at the 27th annual AKMLSO scientific conference in Kisumu on Wednesday, Kithi urged the Ministry of Health to cease downplaying the disease’s presence in Kenya and to take prompt precautions to protect Kenyans.
The government has not declared the country COVID-19-free. “Intensive testing and surveillance are required to combat the disease because it exists,” he explained.
He recommended that the mass testing last at least three months and that the data be analyzed to determine the true positivity rate. He emphasized the need for precise diagnosis in disease management and the Universal Health Coverage (UHC) effort, urging national and local officials to guarantee that all laboratories are adequately equipped.
According to Moses Lorre, head of the meeting’s organizing committee, laboratory technicians from Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda, and Ethiopia were present to investigate the COVID-19 outbreak in the region. Laboratory specialists, according to Lorre, play a vital role in illness case management, and reliable statistics for COVID-19 and other diseases are critical for community health.
41 East African Community (EAC) exhibitors displayed a variety of equipment and technologies that governments were urged to adopt. A new source of concern is the recurrence of monkeypox. “We must use these tools to get credible information for sound decision-making,” Lorre added.