Ciheb-Kenya on the Front Lines of the COVID-19 Vaccine Rollout
Ciheb-Kenya, our local Kenyan partner, has been working with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Kenya Ministry of Health, and the National Vaccines and Immunization Programme (NVIP) to support COVID-19 vaccine preparedness through the ongoing Technical Assistance to Ready and Accelerate Capacities of Public Health Programs in Kenya (TRACK) project. Kenya received its first shipment of vaccines several weeks ago and has been moving ahead quickly. As of April 21, a total of 721,509 persons have been vaccinated against COVID-19 countrywide.
TRACK has been providing technical assistance in three priority counties — Nairobi, Kisumu, and Siaya Counties — to facilitate the seamless rollout of the vaccine. The assistance has included facility assessments and renovations in readiness for the rollout and vaccine awareness and training of healthcare providers to ensure quality service delivery.
“We have a very elaborate and well-established immunization program in Kenya,” said Dr. Emily Koech, CEO of Ciheb-Kenya. “We’ve been collaborating with NVIP, working to make sure the country was ready for this day.”
See Dr. Koech’s interview on KTN News.
Of the 721,509 persons vaccinated, 409,711 are aged 58 years and above, 143,050 are healthcare workers, 109,593 are teachers, and 59,155 are security officers. Nairobi has the highest number of people vaccinated to date with 229,385, while Kisumu and Siaya have had 18,013 and 6,239 people vaccinated, respectively.
The TRACK program continues to work with the Ministry of Health, the National Vaccines and Immunization Program, and county leadership to support the COVID-19 vaccination rollout. Key areas of support include policy development at the national level through participation in technical working groups, training healthcare workers, and technical assistance on data utilization for improved services.
"This is a really monumental time for us," Dr. Koech said. "It’s been almost a year or slightly over a year since the first case was diagnoses, and to be able to roll out a vaccine around this time and to be a part of this crucial process of combatting this deadly virus is really important to us."