Kenya: Dengue Fever Outbreak - Operation Update Report DREF n° MDRKE048


Summary of major revisions made to emergency plan of action:

This Operation Update is published to inform stakeholders of the progress achieved so far in implementing this DREF operation, as well as the amendments made on outputs, indicators and indicator targets, to ensure that there is alignment with the results obtained.
In addition, this operation update also informs of a timeframe extension by one month at no cost (new end date: 30 September 2021) for the following reasons:

  1. IEC materials development and printing have taken considerably longer time due to delay by MoH to provide the messaging, apparently Kenya Government has not approved Dengue IEC materials specific to Kenya, which required KRCS to utilize WHO IEC materials.

  2. Procurement of sprayers and larvicidal chemicals also stalled due to delay by the MoH and Kenya Bureau of Standards (a government agency in charge of standards) in sharing with KRCS the technical specifications of approved sprayers.

  3. The budget line for volunteer allowances related to fumigation and larvicidal activities could not be expended due to absence of the chemicals and sprayers to enable this activity.
    The timeframe extension will allow for completion of the above activities.


Description of the disaster

Dengue symptoms are also like malaria and Chikungunya and therefore diagnosis in most health facilities is a challenge because of lack of Dengue test kits. This has resulted in clinicians misdiagnosing cases especially in the rural and informal settlements where access to medical proper medical services is a challenge. In Lamu County for example, the County disease surveillance team is yet to update its emergency reporting tool to include Dengue Fever. This means that data can only be captured using the monthly reporting tool. According to the County department of health in Mombasa, the first Dengue cases were reported in early March 2021 with 24 cases testing positive out of 47 (51% positivity rate). In April, another 305 cases tested positive out of 315 (97% positivity rate). Lamu County has also reported a total of 224 positive cases from different health facilities where 59 are children under 5 years old. Shella ward has reported highest number of 159 both under 5 and over 5. The first case was reported in January and peak reported in March with more cases being reported to date. The trend is hardly a reflection of the true situation in the County since people who suffer the milder form of the disease do not seek medical attention.

Cumulatively, 553 cases had been reported in the County within the past 4 months of January, February, March and April, with a peak of cases being reported in April. No deaths have been reported so far within the two counties.
As of 20th August, the updated line list in Mombasa County shows cumulative cases of 1,2101 – Mvita leading with 287 cases, Likoni 221, Jomvu 210, Changamwe 199, Nyali 163, Kisauni 112, and 18 cases from other regional Counties of Kilifi, Lamu, Tana River, and Taita Taveta.
The increased efforts are directly attributable to implementation teams’ efforts in flushing out community members presenting with dengue fever symptoms akin to malaise and joint pains for further attention in level III and IV facilities.
The County Director of Public Health - Mombasa made a request for support to Kenya Red Cross on 26 April 2021 and the Chief Officer, Medical Services & Public Health, County Government of Lamu, on the 28 April 2021. In both counties, the cases were still on the rise and urgent action was required to prevent an all-out outbreak which would endanger the lives of the population causing a health disaster. Further requests have been by the County government of Mombasa for further sensitizations in Mvita Sub County which has the biggest share of the cases as per the updated line list.
The two counties have a huge manpower of over 1,000 volunteers distributed across the counties. The volunteers are in different categories including Red Cross action team (RCAT), youth members, Community Disaster Management Committees (CDMC) and Community Health Volunteers (CHVs). Despite having limited access to protection services (psychosocial support) and response equipment’s, the volunteers have continuously been able to provide early warning, take part in response and recovery whenever