Student with coronavirus-like symptoms admitted to KNH

Wednesday March 18 2020

Kenyatta National Hospital in Nairobi. A student from China who arrived at JKIA with coronavirus-like symptom was on January 28, 2020 admitted at KNH isolation ward. FILE PHOTO | NATION MEDIA GROUP


A student from China who arrived at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) with coronavirus-like symptoms has been admitted at the Kenyatta National Hospital (KNH) isolation ward.

The Ministry of Health says it is currently investigating a suspected case of the deadly virus.

The unnamed student, in his early 20s, travelled via Kenya Airways (KQ) and arrived at JKIA with coronavirus-like symptoms. He was rushed to hospital by the Ministry of Health at 9.30 am.

"Kenya Airways confirms that a passenger who travelled on our flight KQ886 from Guangzhou to Nairobi on 28 January 2020 has, as a precautionary measure, been quarantined at the Kenyatta National Hospital," KQ said in a statement.

The student originated from Wuhan, the city that is the epicentre of the coronavirus epidemic in China.


Speaking to the Daily Nation, KNH Communications Manager Hezekiel Gikambi said that the student arrived at JKIA and was flagged by the infectious diseases unit at the airport.

“He was brought by the airport surveillance ambulance and is currently going through tests to rule out or confirm if he, indeed, has the disease,” he said.

KQ said that while on board the aircraft, its crew, guided by the ICAO protocols, isolated the passenger and provided him with a face mask for the entire trip.

More than 2,700 coronavirus cases have been confirmed, prompting countries around the world to shore up surveillance and screening at airports, especially for travellers arriving from Wuhan in China where the outbreak began in December last year.

Symptoms include a running nose, coughing and a sore throat.

Infected persons may have headache and maybe fever, which can last for a couple of days.