On Saturday, June 6, Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta announced that nationwide lockdown measures will remain in place until July 6, in an attempt to limit the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic. Restrictions on road, rail, and air movements in and out of the Nairobi Metropolitan area, and Mombasa and Mandera counties were also extended for 30 days. Within Nairobi, movement restrictions in the Eastleigh area have been lifted, as have those in Mombasa's Old Town and the counties of Kilifi and Kwale. All public gatherings, however, remain banned. The suspension of international passenger flights and the closure of Kenya's borders will continue until July 6, with both cargo and repatriation flights exempt from this measure. Domestic flights are expected to resume in the next week. The nationwide curfew, previously in place between the hours of 19:00 and 05:00 (local time), has been extended, however, the hours are now reduced to 21:00 to 04:00. A gradual reopening of schools is planned to take place from September 1.
Face masks or coverings must be worn at all times when in public and a distance of 1 m (3 ft) maintained from other people. Businesses have been ordered to provide soap and water or an alcohol-based sanitizer at building entryways. Those found in breach of the new measures could face a Sh 20,000 (USD 189) fine or six months of jail time.
As of Monday, June 8, Kenya has recorded 2872 confirmed cases of COVID-19, with 85 associated deaths. Further international spread of the virus is to be expected in the near term.
The first case of COVID-19 was reported on December 31 and the source of the outbreak has been linked to a wet market in Wuhan (Hubei province, China). Human-to-human and patient-to-medical staff transmission of the virus have been confirmed. Many of the associated fatalities have been due to pneumonia caused by the virus.
Cases of the virus have been confirmed in numerous countries and territories worldwide. Virus-screening and quarantining measures are being implemented at airports worldwide, as well as extensive travel restrictions. On March 11, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the global outbreak a pandemic.
Pneumonia symptoms include dry cough, chest pain, fever, and labored breathing. Pneumonia can be contagious and can be transmitted from human to human. The influenza virus, or the flu, is a common cause of viral pneumonia.
Measures adopted by local authorities evolve quickly and are usually effective immediately. Depending on the evolution of the outbreak in other countries, authorities are likely to modify, at very short notice, the list of countries whose travelers are subject to border control measures or entry restrictions upon their arrival to the territory in question. It is advised to postpone nonessential travel due to the risk that travelers may be refused entry or be subject to quarantine upon their arrival or during their stay.
To reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission, travelers are advised to abide by the following measures:
- Frequently clean hands by applying an alcohol-based hand rub or washing with soap and water.
- When coughing and sneezing, cover mouth and nose with a flexed elbow or tissue; if used, throw the tissue away immediately and wash hands.
- If experiencing a fever, cough, difficulty breathing, or any other symptoms suggestive of respiratory illness, including pneumonia, call emergency services before going to the doctor or hospital to prevent the potential spread of the disease.
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