NAIROBI, March 25 (Xinhua) — Kenya will start to vaccinate citizens who are 58 years and above against COVID-19 in a change of strategy as the east African nation seeks to reach as many people as possible, according to Willis Akhwale, chairman of the COVID-19 Vaccine Development Taskforce on Thursday.
“According to our data, these are the most at risk of severe disease and account for 60 percent of recorded deaths. These people will now be a priority target group in the ongoing vaccination exercise,” said Akhwale in a statement issued in Nairobi.
Kenya launched the vaccination exercise on March 8, with the first phase of the vaccination targeting 1.25 million frontline workers at high risk of infection. They included health workers, security personnel, teachers and workers in schools and colleges and the clergy.
Since the start, some 60,000 people have been vaccinated, according to the Ministry of Health, what has been described as low uptake.
The ministry believed vaccination of the elderly would boost the exercise as the east African nation experiences a third wave of the disease that has seen deaths and infections hit a new high.
The Ministry of Health on Wednesday announced 1,540 new COVID-19 infections, tested from a sample size of 9,348 tested in the last 24 hours. The cases which represent a 16.5 percent positivity rate across the country push the total of confirmed cases to 124,707. Enditem