Thousands of unused HIV rapid strip test kits in county laboratories will expire on November 6 and will have to be disposed of. The kits were supplied to 47 county referral hospitals last year.
Kenya Medical Supplies Authority (Kemsa) CEO Jonah Manjari said the affected counties should fill and send to the parastatal forms indicating the number of stripes to be collected for safe disposal.
Manjari said Kemsa supplied batch number 92247K100 kits to counties as per each one’s requisition.
“We at Kemsa, have a policy not to supply any drugs or test kits remaining with six months shelf life,” he said.
He added: “The counties make requisition depending on the projection of the number of people to be tested.”
County governments may now have to check which of their facilities consume the biggest number of kits and redistribute them to beat the November 6 deadline.
Manjari said Kemsa has a challenge when facilities over quantify an order instead of making a requisition to be exhausted within one to three months to avoid being caught up by the expiry date. The kits were sourced using funds from the government and Global Fund.
In Lamu County, Health executive Anne Gathoni confirmed there were such kits in some of the facilities, adding that they were still safe for use.
“We will withdraw them when they expire and use our recalling mechanisms from the sub-counties,” she said.
“The county has already received kits that are fit for use for the next one year,” the county official said.
According to the Ministry of Health’s HIV testing services and guidelines, it is mandatory for laboratories to ensure quality assurance for HIV testing.