Kiambu MP says late mum was buried hurriedly at 8pm after false COVID-19 diagnosis
Kiambu Central MP Jude Njomo whose family had to bury their late mother Margaret Njomo at 8pm in early June has revealed that they got a wrong COVID-19 diagnosis.
Speaking during a Health Committee sitting on Tuesday, Njomo said the deceased had tested negative at the Aga Khan after falling ill.
On June 8, she fell ill again and her family rushed her to the Mater Hospital where she died on arrival.
Her body was preserved at the facility as the family returned home to make funeral plans.
During the preparations, however, the family received news that their late mother had tested positive for coronavirus and they needed to plan for a funeral immediately as per MOH protocols.
“I tried to beg for more time but in line with the law, we received a call at 3pm we buried her by 8pm, for the 82 years she had lived we felt that we did not give her the dignity,” the MP explained.
The family, dissatisfied with the results, asked the Mater Hospital to conduct another test.
The test which was carried out at the Nairobi Hospital returned negative results.
Further, the Kiambu MP approached Ministry of Health Director General Patrick Amoth with the contradictory results.
Two other tests carried out at the National Influenza Centre returned negative results.
“I asked myself how many Kenyans have gotten wrong results, how many other Kenyans go through quarantine because of a wrong outcome, how many labs are careless, there are many Kenyans who are voiceless and let me the voice for those who have been offended by the careless laboratories, I wrote to KMPDB to inquire what is the problem of Lancet?” The MP asked.
Prof. Dominic Mwenje, the Mater Hospital CEO told the committee that they had not reached out to the Lancet Lab after the contentious results because the facility is credible.
“I believe that we didn’t contact Lancet about the negative result, being a national credited Lab used by many hospitals and institutions, when the two returned negative results we did not follow up on this case,” Prof Mwenje explained.
Lancet Kenya Group MD Ahmed Khalebi said the incident of disparities was not unique noting that the facility has been audited by three government institutions.
Khalebi, a pathologist, noted that the deceased’s test was carried out on three genes and two were positive for the coronavirus.
Further, Khalebi explained that between June 13 and June 27, the lab undertook a detailed internal audit and determined that the positive results were indeed correct.
The report tabled before the committee noted that the varied results may have been as a result of different technique of testing, poor specimen, late collection of specimen or if the specimen was mishandled.
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