Treatment

Which Treatment Centres are available in Kenya?

The Kenyan Healthcare Federation (KHC), the health sector board of the Kenya Private Sector Alliance (KPSA) shared a list of treatment centres available for COVID 19 patients, plus number of regular isolation beds, ICU beds and ventilators available in each hospital in the 10 cluster regions in Kenya namely:

  • North Rift
  • South Rift
  • Nyanza
  • Western
  • Nairobi
  • Central
  • Upper Eastern
  • Lower Eastern
  • Coast
  • North & North Eastern

See full document with all COVID 19 Treatment Centres here

How much does it cost to treat a COVID 19 patient in Kenya?

According to KEMRI (Kenya Medical Research Institute), a recently published policy brief costed the case management of COVID-19 patients from a health system perspective as follows:

  • Per patient COVID-19 case management costs in hospitals are substantial ranging from KES 21,359   per day for asymptomatic patients, KES 21,361 per day for patients with mild symptoms, KES 24,705 for patients with severe disease and KES 51,684 for critical COVID-19 patients in ICU’s.
  • There is therefore an urgent need to develop a sustainable financing arrangement for COVID-19 for the country.
  • If these costs are passed on to patients to pay out of pocket, they will result in significant catastrophe and impoverishment.
  • It is imperative therefore for the country to develop a prepayment mechanism to provide financial risk protection to patients and households against the financial hardship that they will face if required to pay for COVID-19 case management costs out of pocket.
  • Per patient health system costs for COVID-19 case management are driven by PPE costs which accounts for approximately 65% of total costs
    Interventions to reduce PPE costs will improve the affordability of COVID-19 case management.
  • Home based care for asymptomatic and mild COVID-19 patients is 9 times cheaper to the health system compared to institutional care (hospitals or isolation centers).
  • Institutional care is driven by PPE, accommodation & overhead (hotel) costs, and staff costs.
  • The cost savings from home care should however be weighed against feasibility of home-based care and resultant impact on health outcomes (for COVID-19 patients, and transmission risk)

Click here to see full brief

How Are Different Countries Treating COVID-19?

China

At the beginning of the outbreak, China used anti-HIV drugs such as Lopinavir or Arbidor to treat patients with SARS CoV2.

Favilavir has been used to treat severe cases of COVID-19 because the use of Favilavir demonstrated encouraging profile with mild adverse reactions in coronavirus patients in trials in Shenzhen, Guangdong province.

Earlier this month, plasma extracted from the recovered patients helped in reducing the virus effect in critically ill patients.

Roche arthritis drug, Actemra is approved to treat coronavirus patients in China, however, there is no clinical trial evidence yet that the drug has been effective.

Chinese researchers are studying the use of stem cell technology in the treatment of critical patients with COVID-19.Stem cells can self-renew or multiply while maintaining the potential to develop into other types of cells. They can become cells of the blood, heart, lungs or other body parts. Four patients who were treated using stem cell therapy, were recovered and discharged.

Medical authorities in China have said that a drug called ‘favipiravir’ which is used in Japan to treat new strains of influenza have been effective in treating coronavirus patients. Patients who were given the medicine in Shenzhen turned negative for the virus after a median of 4 days after becoming positive. In addition, X-rays confirmed improvements in lung condition in about 91% of the patients who were treated with favipiravir, compared to 62% or those without the drug.

None of these drugs has yet been proved to be universally applicable to every patient battling the novel coronavirus.

United States

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved limited emergency use for chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine as a treatment for COVID-19.

The FDA will allow doctors across the country to begin using plasma donated by coronavirus survivors to treat patients who are critically ill with the virus under new emergency protocols. This treatment is known as convalescent plasma, which dates back centuries and was used during the flu pandemic of 1918. Some experts have argued that it might be the best hope for combating the coronavirus until more sophisticated therapies can be developed, which could take several months.

According to the CDC, the therapeutic options for COVID-19 patients that are currently in use are chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine and one of the investigational agents (remdesivir).

Thailand

The doctors in Thailand have reportedly succeeded in using a combination of HIV drugs including lopinavir and ritonavir and the antiviral medication oseltamivir to treat coronavirus infected patients.

South Korea

The experts at South Korea have advised to use anti-HIV medication – Kaletra and anti-malaria drugs for the treatment of COVID-19. Kaletra includes the drugs Lopinavir and Ritonavir. They are also recommending the use of hydroxychloroquine in combination with the anti-HIV medication.

Taiwan

Taiwan has started to synthesize the Favilavir drug to treat the patients of COVID-19. Favilavir is the second antiviral drug after remdesivir which Taiwan has succeeded in synthesizing to fight the SARS CoV-2. This antiviral medication has shown some efficacy in treating the coronavirus.

United Kingdom

Few hospitals of the UK is going to test five new drugs named as Heparin, Bemcentini, Medi3506, Calquence, Zilucoplan in the coming days in search to combat the coronavirus. These drugs were chosen from a list of 200 potential candidates and if they do not work for COVID-19, another batch will then be considered for trials.

Spain

Spain decided to continue giving hydroxychloroquine to the coronavirus patients unlike several other European countries including Italy, Belgium, France that followed the World Health Organization’s decision to pause a large trial of hydroxychloroquine due to safety concerns.

Russia

Avifavir, known generically as favipiravir has become a ray of hope for the Russians. Avifavir, the antiviral drug is the first approved drug of Russia which is going to be given from June 11 to treat COVID-19 patients said by the head of Russia’s RDIF sovereign wealth fund.

Coronavirus Drugs Under Development

The following are the list of drugs for Coronavirus that are in various stages of development.

  • Remdesivir by Gilead Sciences
  • Acterma by Roche
  • Galidesivir by Biocryst Pharma
  • REGN3048-3051 and Kevzara by Regeneron
  • SNG001 by Synairgen Research
  • AmnioBoost by Lattice Biologics