The country has recorded a sharp rise in the number of Covid 19 cases with 1,231 positive cases being detected out of 10,115 tests conducted in the last 24 hours representing 12% positivity.
Ministry of Health Permanent Secretary for Technical Services Dr Kennedy Malama said the increase in the number of cases has been fuelled by laxity in adherence to public health guidelines, super spreader events and the effects of the SARS COV 2 variants.
Speaking during a briefing today, Dr Malama said there is need for collective efforts at all levels to change the tide of the COVID 19 landscape in the country.
“The infection we are now seeing is more contagious (spreading very fast) and is causing more severe disease.
Our Hospitals are filling up faster than we saw during the 1st and 2nd waves. We would like to assure you that Government is doing everything possible to save lives, livelihoods, learning institutions and the economy,” he said.
The Permanent Secretary said six deaths were recorded in the mentioned period of time, 3 from Lusaka and the other 3 from Southern Province.
Meanwhile, Dr Malama has disclosed that the vaccination Programme is set to resume for the second dose on 23rd June.
“We are pleased to announce that we will be receiving 108,000 additional doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine by 21st June, 2021. This will go towards supplementing the vaccines assigned for the second dose recipients as well as those yet to receive the first dose,” Dr Malama said.
He stated that the country is expected to receive 100,000 doses of sinopharm in the next 5 weeks.
Dr Malama said the Ministry of Health has continued making strides in mobilising more vaccines through the Africa Vaccine acquisition trust and other options as approved by Cabinet.
And Dr Malama has noted that Misinformation particularly through social media is part of the infodemic that needs to be fought on all fronts as it undermines efforts to control the pandemic.
Speaking at the same briefing, Director infectious Disease Professor Lloyd Mulenga said slightly over 40 covid 19 cases were recorded in schools countrywide in the last 24 hours.
“Over the last five days, about 400 cases have been recorded in schools. Fortunately, the learners have had mild symptoms. And we have managed to quarantine them in various facilities,” Professor Mulenga said.