New Covid-19 variant found in Kenya

A new variant of the novel coronavirus has been found in Kenya.

This was revealed by preliminary research of the Kenya Medical Research Institute (KEMRI).

The variant which is currently in Kenya only was detected in the south-east of the country after KEMRI conducted a study between June and October 2020.

According to KEMRI even though it is normal for viruses to mutate, they need to conduct further research to assess the impact of the variant.

Kenya has so far recorded nearly 100,000 Covid-19 cases with over 1700 deaths.

The East African country is not the only one where a new variant has been detected. In South Africa, a faster-spreading variant has been detected. The World Health Organisation (WHO) has said that this is also in three African states – neighbouring Botswana, Zambia, and The Gambia in West Africa.

Africa has so far recorded over three million Covid-19 cases, and daily case numbers were exceeding the first wave peak.

An average of 25,223 cases was reported each day between 28 December 2020 and 10 January 2021 in Africa. This is almost 39% higher than the July 2020 two-week peak of 18,104 daily average cases, the WHO said.

The WHO indicated that it is critical now for governments to revamp public health measures to avoid an increase in infections which could lead to health facilities being stretched.

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