COVID-19 Update – late November 2021

The following update is provided by Dr. Steve Burgert, Medical Superintendent, Tenwek Hospital

We praise God for His continued provision for our care of COVID-19 patients and staff members at Tenwek Hospital. Along with the rest of Kenya, we appear to be concluding our “4th wave” and have seen 129 deaths associated with the virus. However, we still have about 7 to 15 COVID-19 patients receiving inpatient care each day – mostly all young, unvaccinated persons.

We are grateful to have COVID-19 Rapid Antigen Testing (RAT) available to test all hospitalized patients and inpatient visitors and have performed over 12,000 tests since May. This has seemed to reduce hospital transmission to staff or other patients. Tenwek’s COVID-19 positivity rate decreased from 7.0% in September to 2.9% in October. Approximately 80% of Tenwek Hospital staff are fully vaccinated.

Currently we are focusing on providing vaccinations via Tenwek Community Health and Development; less than 5% of Kenyans are vaccinated. To date, over 2,700 vaccines have been administered by Tenwek Hospital. We use whichever COVID-19 vaccination is available in Kenya via the World Health Organization’s COVAX program.

Over the past year, several waves of COVID-19 patients challenged our courageous staff and pushed our resources to the limit as we provided emergency and specialty care to those who needed it most. The impacts of COVID-19 will be felt well into 2022. Thanks to FOT for generous donations for equipment early during the pandemic, which greatly expanded oxygen concentrating capacity needed to care for our COVID-19 patients.

Prayers of Praise & Thanksgiving

٠ That Tenwek Hospital staff members have not had serious, long-term COVID-19 illnesses.
٠ That even during the pandemic, Tenwek Hospital has continued to function well overall in providing care to God’s glory.

Prayers of Petition

٠ That Kenyan adults will accept the value of COVID-19 vaccinations and not be misled in thinking they are not needed or
are “just for children.”
٠ That there will be adequate supplies of 1st and 2nd doses of COVID-19 vaccines in Kenya.
٠ That Tenwek’s staff members will continue to be safe from serious COVID-19 illnesses.
٠ That Tenwek’s counselors will continue to be able to provide emotional and spiritual support for patients, families, and staff

We are so very grateful to everyone partnering with us through Friends of Tenwek in prayer and financial support.