What do you know about COVID-19?

Health workers in protective gear at the isolation ward in Mbagathi hospital./COURTESY

With over five preventive measures put in place by the government to minimize the spread of the deadly Corona virus in the country, majority of Kenyans have opted to just washing their hands as a preventive measure.

This is according to a research done by Trends and Insights For Africa (TIFA), that shows only 72 percent of Kenyans frequently wash their hands with soap and water as recommended by the government while 18 percent have not adopted any of the recommended measures.

The research shows that there is a low uptake of the other recommended measures especially social distancing.

On the knowledge of how the virus is spread, the report shows that there is high awareness of how the virus is being spread through coughing or sneezing but there is low knowledge of the fact that contaminated places spread the virus.

It also shows that a significant number (16%) of Kenyan adults do not know any of the five symptoms of COVID-19, despite numerous communication messages aired by the media.

Coughing and fever are the two main symptoms of Coronavirus that Kenyans are most aware of at 77% and 70% respectively.

There is low awareness of symptoms such as headaches and difficulty in breathing.

The research was conducted on 15th-21st of March 2020 on 1000 respondents nationwide via telephone calls.

According to the ministry of health, recommended prevention measures on the virus include;

-Washing hands regularly with soap and running water or use of an alcohol based hand sanitizer.

-Cough or sneeze into a disposable tissue or flexed elbow.

-Observe at least 1.5 metres social distance

-Keep away from people who have flu-like symptoms and avoid unnecessary travels.

-Avoid handshake, hugs or kisses.