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Kenya: Yellow Fever and Chikungunya Outbreaks - Jan 2022

Disaster types

The current Yellow Fever outbreak was first reported in January 2022. The cases were first reported in Merti Sub County of Isiolo County. Kenya Medical Research Institute (KEMRI) has since confirmed 3 positive cases out of 6 samples from the sub-county. As of 23 Jan, a total of 15 patients presenting fever, jaundice, muscle pain and fever pain (13 males and two females) were line-listed; and three deaths were recorded. A total of three cases turned out positive out of six samples analyzed. The majority of the cases are between 11 years-40 years (82.41 and are reported to come from Merti (bordering Wajir) and Garba Tulla (bordering Garissa) sub-counties. Unconfirmed reports later this week have indicated a possibility of new cases in Baringo and Elgeyo Marakwet. The Ministry of Health reported an outbreak and issued an alert on 3 March received to all the 47 counties and initiated a response both at the County and national levels on 4 March.

As a response, the Ministry of Health is initiating a national vaccination campaign starting with Wajir, Garissa, Marsabit, Meru, Samburu, Elgeyo Marakwet, Baringo, West Pokot, Turkana, Mandera, and Tana River. Yellow fever vaccine is an effective public health prevention intervention and is offered as a scheduled routine vaccine for children aged nine months in four counties in Kenya (Elgeyo Marakwet, West Pokot, Turkana, and Baringo).

The first cases of Chikungunya were reported in mid-February 2022 in Kotulo within Wajir County. Between February 10th and 24th, 23 samples from the suspected cases were collected and analyzed at KEMRI Nairobi laboratory, out of these, five samples tested positive for the Chikungunya virus, this is from the Ministry of health rapid assessment report. A rapid assessment team by MoH and County Government was deployed to the affected area by the Wajir county department of health. The team visited 50 households from different villages that were suspected to be having patients suffering from Chikungunya. The team identified 16 patients with symptoms of Chikungunya disease. The 15 samples were sent to the KEMRI laboratory for investigation. The team has since line-listed a total of 67 cases in which five are confirmed and 53 are probable cases in which most of the cases are epidemiologically linked to the confirmed cases from MoH/KEMRI above. Wargadud Ward in Tarbaj Sub-County is the ward affected by those potential cases. (IFRC, 23 Mar 2022)