Coronavirus cases near 260 in EAC region

Cases of coronavirus patients have increased to 258 in the East African Community region, paralyzing business and halting travels across the bloc’s partner states.

Five partner states including Rwanda, Burundi, Kenya, Tanzania, and Uganda have reported COVID-19 cases.

 

So far, Rwanda has recorded 82 coronavirus cases, and this only second to Kenya in terms of numbers.

 

In order to contain the spread of the novel coronavirus, the country ordered a 15-day extension of the current two-week lockdown that was initially declared on March 21.

 

The lockdown will now last until April 19.

Kenya on Thursday recorded the highest number in a single day, after they recorded 29 new cases which brought their tally to 110 cases.

Uganda had recorded 44 COVID-19 Cases while Tanzania has so far recorded 20 cases.

Burundi which is also the region’s latest country to confirm coronavirus cases has recorded 2 COVID-19 cases.

South Sudan has not reported any case of the coronavirus pandemic so far.

Four deaths from the virus have so far, where three patients have succumbed to the virus in Kenya while in Tanzania one has so far died.

Following the increasing number of cases, the East African Community Secretariat announced that it will deploy mobile laboratories and coronavirus test kits to all member states.

The announcement also pointed out that each member state is set to receive a four-wheel-drive vehicle fitted with laboratory and ICT equipment, as well as all the necessary consumables for a fully functional laboratory with the capacity to conduct tests for Ebola and the coronavirus in addition to other pathogens.

According to the secretariat, some EAC member states have implemented strategies to address the outbreak at national level.

Among the strategies include the suspension of all face to face meetings, closure of all schools and tertiary training institutions, closure of air space and borders as well as implementation of quarantine on arrival for travelers from high-risk countries due to the outbreak.

As stands, statistics indicate that more than 961,343 people have so far tested positive with the deadly virus, leading to a total of 49,160 deaths, globally.

Over 200,000 people have recovered, while only 5% of the infected patients are in critical condition.

eashimwe@newtimesrwanda.com

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