The Coronavirus pandemic has been around for an extended period. Major issues have been linked to COVID-19, and a substantial number of people and corporations in Kenya have acknowledged the disease should be taken seriously.
To this end, the Kenya Bureau of Standards (KBS) has outlined key aspects about the issuance of face masks, and what they should align to.
Here is a statement from the agency:
Following the declaration of the novel Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) as a pandemic by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the attendant recommendations by the Ministry of Health vide Legal Notice No. 50 of 6th April 2020 that issued several directives among them that every Kenyan who is in a public place shall use a proper face mask that must cover the users’ mouth and nose to reduce the risk of exposure to the novel coronas virus (COVID-19), there has been an upsurge in demand for this category of products. This has led to the temptation by unscrupulous economic operators to quickly cash in on the same through offering for sale face masks that are not properly certified and or compromising on the standards of the same. To support the fight against the COVID – 19 pandemics, KEBS has developed the following Standards on facemasks:
- KS 2636: 2016: Kenya standard specification for surgical masks
- KS 2409-6:2018: Health care wastes management commodities- Specification for Filtering facemasks that protect against particles.
- KPAS 2917:2020 – Reusable cloth mask
The use of substandard medical facemasks, or even misuse of the masks, is highly risky because it gives a false sense of protection thereby increasing the risk of exposure.
KBS has also revealed that the following masks are substandard:
- Wandas General Supplies Ltd. P.O. Box 682 Nairobi, Kenya by Wandas
- Arax Mills Ltd. P.O. Box 668-00606 Nairobi, Kenya, by ARAX
- Hela Intimates EPZ Ltd P. O. Box 30500-00100, Nairobi, Kenya -NO BRAND NAME