The Standard Group Plc is a multi-media organization with investments in media platforms spanning newspaper print operations, television, radio broadcasting, digital and online services. The Standard Group is recognized as a leading multi-media house in Kenya with a key influence in matters of national and international interest.
  • Standard Group Plc HQ Office,
  • The Standard Group Center,Mombasa Road.
  • P.O Box 30080-00100,Nairobi, Kenya.
  • Telephone number: 0203222111, 0719012111
  • Email: [email protected]

Mask up, maintain social distance; Ministry says amid rise in flu cases

Ministry of Health Acting Health Director-General, Dr Patrick Amoth. [Samson Wire,Standard]

The Ministry of Health has linked the recent rise in respiratory illnesses nationwide to an uptick in influenza infections.

On Thursday, March 27, Acting Health Director-General Dr Patrick Amoth urged the public to adhere to health protocols, including regular hand washing and wearing face masks in public places.

“We have been monitoring influenza cases over the last two decades,” said Dr Amoth, adding, “We have observed the occurrence of cases throughout the year with an upsurge of cases in two peaks; February to March and July to November.”

Though the Health Ministry has dismissed the surge in respiratory infections to COVID-19, despite widely circulated reports.

He said his office has also been tracking the SARS-CoV-2 cases, specifically the new variant Glade JN1, since December 2023.

According to Amoth, despite media reports attributing an increase in respiratory infections to COVID-19 (SARS-CoV-2 Omicron JN1), the ministry’s surveillance system has not reported an increase in SARS-CoV-2 numbers.

Instead, the Ministry noted there has been a reported increase in influenza cases.

“The current rise in numbers aligns with the expected cases of influenza at this time of the year. There have been no significant changes in the number of hospitalisations and deaths reported,” Dr Amoth explained.

Influenza infections are typically self-limiting but may also result in severe disease or death, especially in high-risk individuals.

Amoth advised members of the public to avoid close contact with people showing respiratory symptoms, limit contact with others if sick, and cover the nose and mouth when coughing or sneezing.

At the same time, he encouraged regular handwashing, avoiding touching the face, cleaning and disinfecting surfaces that may be contaminated with flu viruses, and getting vaccinated against influenza if possible.

He said that special attention should be given to cases showing signs of breathing difficulties and suspected infection among children, the elderly, pregnant women, and people with coexisting conditions such as cancer, TB, HIV, diabetes, and heart diseases.

Related Topics


Trending Now


Popular this week