Ministry Permanent Secretary for Technical Services Dr Kennedy Malama has disclosed that Zambia has recorded 306 new cases out of 1,243 tests conducted in the last 24 hours bringing the cumulative number of cases to 5,555.
Dr Malama explained that 253 cases were recorded in Lusaka, 19 in Nakonde, 17 in Kitwe, 3 in Mpika, 3 in Ndola, 2 in Chingola, 1 in Chinsali, 1 in Kalabo and 1 in Mongu.
Speaking when he gave the latest COVID-19 update today, Dr Malama disclosed that 3 deaths were recorded and brings the cumulative number of deaths associated with COVID-19 to149.
“We have registered another facility death in Levy Mwanawasa Isolation Centre. The cumulative number of deaths associated with COVID-19 now stands at 149. Following the re-classification of the deaths in which the virus has been detected, it has been determined that 41 are COVID deaths while 98 are COVID-19 associated deaths. Ten (10) deaths are yet to be classified. The COVID-19 associated deaths are those in whom COVID-19 was detected but is not the primary cause of death” he explained.
Meanwhile, the Ministry of Health has said that they are working around the clock to ensure there is timely release of COVID-19 test results.
Dr Malama has noted the public worry and concern on the delay to release the results saying Zambia like many other countries in the world is facing a global challenge in terms of testing capacity.
Dr Malama, therefore, called for support from all stakeholders such as the corporate institutions to hold hands with government in providing support with testing kits and reagents and further thanked all those supplementing government in the response thus far.
He said the government’s intention is to increase testing to unprecedented levels and ultimately reach 10,000 tests per day in order to enhance mass community screening.
“We are not happy with our current testing levels but once we work around all the issues, we will be able to do more testing and release the test results timely” he assured and said government has procured various testing reagents which have delayed due to logistical issues as a result of the pandemic.