The Teachers Service Commission (TSC) has asked its staff who fall under the high-risk age of 58 and above to work from home.
TSC also announced that all Covid-19 ailments are fully covered under the teachers’ medical scheme.
Yesterday, Chief Executive Officer Nancy Macharia said all teachers with pre-existing conditions should work from home.
“They can be utilised in offering critical duties such as preparing schemes of work, teaching aids and marking, among others. We assure them of the safety of their jobs,” said Dr Macharia.
Kenya National Union of Teachers (Knut) data shows that there are at least 50,000 teachers aged 55 years or above.
“Some of these teachers already have underlying conditions and the employer must conduct a serious audit to ascertain the exact number and how they can be helped,” said Wilson Sossion, the Knut secretary general.
Mr Sossion added that younger teachers with preexisting conditions and at higher risk of contracting Covid-19 should also be asked to work from home.
“These teachers are now in the frontline and must be protected fully by the employer,” he said.
Yesterday, Macharia assured teachers that their medical needs would be taken care of.
“The commission has negotiated with the teachers’ medical provider, for teachers to be covered for all Covid-19 related illnesses,” said Macharia.
Minet Kenya, the administrator of the TSC medical scheme, said it was committed to covering teachers and their dependants even as virus cases spike.
“The main insurance practice in our market, however, is to have sub-limits for preexisting chronic conditions. The teachers’ scheme does not have such sub-limits,” Minet CEO Sammy Muthui said.
Kenya Secondary School Heads Association (Kessha) national chair Kahi Indimuli welcomed the news but said the decision must be communicated to all medical facilities.
“We hope that they have communicated that to the health facilities so that teachers do not get turned away,” he said.
A Covid-19 Incidence Reporting tool using USSD code *202*07# has been set up to assist teachers report to the scheme provider any suspected or confirmed Covid-19 cases.