Kenya and Tanzania have embarked on health collaborations aimed at putting stringent measures to contain the spread of Covid-19 in the two countries.
This is after the Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe and his Tanzanian counterpart Dr Dorothy Gwajima met today and held bilateral talks on mutual assistance and cooperation between the two countries on matters health.
Addressing the press after bilateral talks, Kagwe said the visit by the Tanzanian delegation is happening against a backdrop of the debilitating Covid-19 pandemic that has affected the world and also our two countries.
“We are headed to one and a half years since the pandemic struck. Despite putting up stringent measures to contain the disease, it has continued to ravage our countries forcing us to rethink how we conduct our day to day activities,” he said.
He singled out trade as among the most affected sectors of the economy yet it plays a huge role in ensuring citizens earn a living.
In regards to that, the two countries agreed to put stringent measures to contain the spread of the disease at the borders.
“The areas we have tackled include cross border issues that involve citizens of both countries such as transport, Covid-19 testing and validation systems for those leaving and entering both countries among other issues” said Kagwe.
On her part, Gwajima advocated the use of combined traditional and conventional therapies in the fight against the pandemic.
She argued that since there has been no known cure for the deadly virus, wisdom dictates the use of such knowledge to mitigate the effects of the pandemic.
She noted that Africa was overflowing with tried and tested herbal medicines that have the ability to treat multiple diseases.
“These traditional remedies have been in use for ages in our societies and many have been helped by them, including myself and my family,” Gwajima said.
However, acknowledges the importance of the vaccine noting that this is the reason the East African nation has finally rolled out a vaccination campaign.
Tanzania launched a mass vaccination campaign and President Samia Suluhu was the first to receive Covid-19 jab.
This is after Tanzania received 1,058,400 doses of the Johnson & Johnson manufactured vaccine from the United States on Saturday through the Covax initiative.
The CS thanked the delegation from Tanzania for finding time to come to Kenya and engage with the ministry in matters to do with the health of the people of the two countries.
“This bilateral engagement goes a long way not only to emphasise the value of good health but also to confirm and even cement the cordial relationship the two countries have enjoyed over the years,” said the CS.
Gwajima was accompanied by Permanent Secretary, Alex Makubi, who arrived in the country earlier this week.
He has been hosted by Kenya’s Health Permanent Secretary Susan Mochache.
The two PSs have in the past week been discussing pertinent Covid-19 issues that will help in reducing the spread of the disease in the two countries.