Dr Cory Rodgers writes in The New Humanitarian yesterday on preparations being made at Kakuma refugee camp in Kenya ahead of a potential outbreak of the COVID-19 virus. The Kakuma camp is home to over 194,000 refugees and asylum seekers. At the time of writing, it has yet to have any cases of the virus.
Rodgers reports that people are trying to stock up with food before it becomes scarce. The World Food Programme is distributing May’s rations early, but these will not be enough, so people are using the little cash they have from cash transfers to try to stock up. UNHCR has been focusing on prevention activities, setting up a Cover-19 task force, delivering information campaigns, setting up isolation areas, but there is considerable cause for concern. Rodgers writes, “Like the rest of Kenya, there is a shortage of personal protective equipment, oxygen, and other essentials needed to contain a COVID-19 outbreak.” Turkana County has no intensive care units and a very fragile health system.