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The spread of SARS-CoV-2 in Africa is poorly described. The first case of SARS-CoV-2 in Kenya was reported on March 12, 2020 and an overwhelming number of cases and deaths were expected but by July 31, 2020 there were only 20,636 cases and 341 deaths. However, the extent of SARS-CoV-2 exposure in the community remains unknown. We determined the prevalence of anti-SARS-CoV-2 IgG among blood donors in Kenya in April-June 2020. Crude seroprevalence was 5.6% (174/3098). Population-weighted, test-performance-adjusted national seroprevalence was 4.3% (95% CI 2.9-5.8%) and was highest in urban counties, Mombasa (8.0%), Nairobi (7.3%) and Kisumu (5.5%). SARS-CoV-2 exposure is more extensive than indicated by case-based surveillance and these results will help guide the pandemic response in Kenya, and across Africa.

Original publication





Science (New York, N.Y.)

Publication Date



KEMRI-Wellcome Trust Research Programme, Kilifi, Kenya.