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COVID-19 Updates

USA Coronavirus Cases Surge to lead in the World

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NEW YORK (Reuters) – The number of U.S. coronavirus infections climbed above 82,000 on Thursday, surpassing the national tallies of China and Italy, as New York, New Orleans and other hot spots faced a surge in hospitalizations and looming shortages of supplies, staff and sick beds.

With medical facilities running low on ventilators and protective masks and hampered by limited diagnostic testing capacity, the U.S. death toll from COVID-19, the respiratory disease caused by the virus, rose beyond 1,200.

“Any scenario that is realistic will overwhelm the capacity of the healthcare system,” New York Governor Andrew Cuomo told a news conference. He described the state’s projected shortfall in ventilators – machines that support the respiration of people have cannot breathe on their own – as “astronomical.”

“It’s not like they have them sitting in the warehouse,” Cuomo added. “There is no stockpile available.”

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COVID-19 Updates

Coronavirus: Kenya’s Cases Rise to 59

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Kenya has recorded a rise of Coronavirus by nine raising the total to 59, this is according to the Ministry of Health.

The Ministry’s Chief Administrative Secretary Dr. Mercy Mwangagi said 234 samples had been tested over the past 24 hours yielding the nine new cases.

She said a total of 508 traced contacts had been discharged with 1,160 others still placed under monitoring awaiting further tests to validate their status.

“In the last 24 hours, 234 samples have been analyzed and nine people have tested positive bringing the total to 59 as of today, 31 March 2020,” said Mwangagi.

Kenya has since confirming the first COVID-19 case on March 13 recorded the recovery of a patient after undergoing treatment at the Kenyatta National Hospital’s Infectious Disease Unit.

A 66-year-old patient who had pre-existing conditions died on Thursday, March 26 at Aga Khan Hospital in Nairobi.

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Chapa Dimba Na Safaricom

Coronavirus Delays Beijing Raiders Raid

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“Thank you for calling Mark, Did you know that Mark is a male name meaning work hard and play even harder. I thought you should know,” were the entertaining words from the Safaricom skiza tune ring back tone as I called the Chapa Dimba na Safaricom Nairobi region girl’s champions Beijing Raiders coach Mark Okwiri.

Just like the words in Okwiri’s skiza tune ring back tone, depicting him through his first name as a man who works hard, he worked hard to reclaim the Nairobi regional title and is in the process of working harder to lift the national title.

Despite the relative lull brought about by the Coronavirus pandemic which has interrupted sports activities and more importantly the Chapa Dimba na Safaricom, Okwiri says his team is not distracted and is working hard on a winning formula as he waits for the tournament’s resumption.

Beijing Raiders winners of the Chapa Dimba na Safaricom season one Nairobi title went on rampage to hammer defending champions Acakoro 6-0 at Jamhuri High School during the regional finals on February 23rd.

Sensational Beijing Raiders striker Salome Drailer struck four goals as Fasila Adhiambo added with a brace and an assist as the season one champions proceed to the national finals in a one sided match.

However, Beijing Raiders put their preparations on the ice for the national finals mid this month of March after the government imposed a ban on social gatherings and games as a measure to curb the Coronavirus pandemic threat.

“We respected the ban and stopped training or engaging in any football activities but am very much in touch with my girls in guiding and advising them to keep safe and remain focused for the Chapa Dimba national finals by avoiding in getting into activities that will affect their form,” he said.

Okwiri said Beijing Raiders which was eliminated in the preliminary stages of the Chapa Dimba season one does not fear any team and is ready, raring to go.

“I can’t single out any team that I consider as a threat as the draw is yet to be conducted in which I don’t know our immediate opponents. Let’s cross the bridge when we reach there,” he said.

He added:” Furthermore I don’t talk about other teams because that is more or else like gossiping, can only authoritatively to speak about my team. If you have any queries as me about Beijing Raiders and leave the other teams to talk about themselves.”

Beijing Raiders boasts of the Chapa Dimba Nairobi’s Most Valuable Player (MVP) and top scorer Salome Drailer and goalkeeper and Esnas Kisia who wore the Nairobi regional Golden Gloves award by keeping a clean sheet.

The Nairobi Starehe sub county based Beijing Raiders joins eight times Kenya’s national secondary schools champions Rift Valley’s Wiyeta, Eastern’s Isiolo Starlets, Kwale Ladies (Coast) Central’s Falling Waters to the national finals to be played in Mombasa at a later date.

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COVID-19 Updates

Coronavirus: Safaricom Intervenes to Fight Pandemic

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Kenya’s leading mobile phone service provider and Telecoms Company Safaricom have put in place support and response measures to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The measures range from a waiver of transaction charges to encourage cashless transactions through M-pesa, toll-free Coronavirus emergency response number, bandwidth to encourage self-isolation by working from home and donation of four thermal cameras to the Ministry of Health that will help with the Coronavirus screening at various border entry points.

 The interventions by the Safaricom in the fight to curb the pandemic with its friendlier products and services are being implemented in the following ways;

M-PESA

  1. Following the request by the government to explore ways of deepening mobile money usage to reduce the risk of spreading the virus through the physical handling of cash. We have zero-rated all person-to-person transactions below Ksh1,000. M-PESA users are now able to send any amount below Ksh1,000 for free over the next 90 (ninety) days.
  2. This represents 75% of all M-PESA transactions.
  3. To support the small and micro business enterprises (SMEs), CBK approved the increase of daily M-PESA transaction limits from the current Ksh70,000 to Ksh150,000.
  4. Kenyans are now able to transact up to Ksh300,000 up from the current limit of Ksh140,000 and hold up to Ksh300,000 in their M-PESA wallets.
  5. We have also zero-rated all charges for payments made to all hospitals and dispensaries across the country for a period of ninety days.

Home Fibre

  1. To support the working from home request by the President, we have doubled the bandwidth offered to our Home Fibre customers at no extra costs to customers for a period of ninety days.

 

Call Centre Support – 719

  1. Safaricom is also working with the Government by providing a Call Centre and integrating a toll-free line 719 which has been set up by the National Emergency Response Committee on Coronavirus to support Kenyans in understanding how to prevent and manage suspected cases.
  2. We have also interconnected other networks to ensure that their subscribers can access the Call Centre.
  3. All calls to 719 are free. Over 300 customer care executives trained and handling line 719.

Line 719 output

    1. IVR average hits – average of 70,000 daily calls
    2. IVR Self-service usage – 67,000 daily users
    3. USSD usage – average of 900,000 daily users. Thursday 19th peaked at 2.1 Million users

  1. Safaricom Foundation – Purchase and donation of four thermal cameras for Ministry of Health that will help with screening at various border entry points

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