Early comprehensive testing for COVID-19 is essential to curb the deadly virus that has ravaged the globe and presented a threat to health care systems worldwide. This was established during a meeting between JKUAT and the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation (EGPAF).
The two organisations are collaborating in COVID-19 testing and treatment under the project dubbed Catalytic COVID Action Project, in an effort aimed at curbing the COVID-19 scourge.
Director, Technical Strategy at EGPAF, Dr. Aida Yemanerberhan said testing and case identification are key strategies in controlling the COVID-19 pandemic and was glad the project will utilise comprehensive COVID-19 testing in its implementation.
The project is being implemented in Kenya, Cameroon and Zimbabwe. However Kenya will be the only Country rolling out a digital platform for COVID-19 Management under the project.
“Using the digital expertise of JKUAT, it is gratifying to note that Kenya will be a learning base of how the model work and inform the activities in Cameroon and Zimbabwe,” said Dr. Yemanerberhan.
EGPAF received funding from Unitaid to implement integration of COVID-19 testing in Maternal and child health (MCH), HIV and TB clinics in selected health clinics and the JKUAT Hospital was one of the facilities chosen in Kiambu County.
Dr. Yemanerberhan also said the project will strive to engage the youth especially when it came to the uptake of the COVID-19 vaccine.
“All over the globe, most COVID-19 initiatives have been focusing on adults. There is need to involve the youth in this fight as we raise awareness in testing, treatment and vaccination.
While further guaranteeing the EGPAF team of JKUAT’s support in ensuring that the mandate of the project is achieved, Vice Chancellor, Prof. Victoria Wambui Ngumi said she was glad some of the activities had taken off prior to signing the Memorandum of Understanding.
“I am pleased to note that EGPAF has held a training with JKUAT’s Head of Sections in the Health Services Department. This shows their commitment in achieving the projects objectives,” said Prof. Ngumi.
While assuring the EGPAF team that they had chosen a reliable and formidable partner who will ensure the project’s goals and objectives are achieved, Prof. Ngumi said JKUAT has been at the forefront in fostering a culture of research and innovation among faculty and students.
“We encourage collaborative research across discipline and this has enabled the University produce novel innovation which are beneficial to society and competent graduates ready for industry,” said Prof. Ngumi.
Dr. Yemanerberhan was accompanied by EGPAF Country Director, Dr. Eliud Mwangi, EGPAF Catalytic COVID Action Project Manager, Dr. Calvin Lwaka, EGPAF Director Research, Dr. Rose Masaba, EGPAF Project Coordinator, Caroline Wanjiru, and EGPAF Assistant Director Technical Strategy, Dr. Allan Mayi.
Prof. Ngumi was accompanied by Ag. Deputy Vice Chancellors, Prof. Jackson Kwanza and Prof. Elegwa Mukulu, Ag. Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Patrick Mburugu and Dean, School of Nursing, Dr. Mutisya Kyalo.