The last 24hours has seen our country record the highest number of COVID 19 in patients, new admissions, and deaths ever.
Ministry of Health Permanent Secretary Technical Services Dr. Kennedy Malama has said in a statement that the situation is an indication that COVID 19 transmissions are still taking place at the household, community, and institutional levels countrywide mainly due to the general laxity in adhering to the Public health measures with congregate settings and super spreader activities still fueling the situation.
“We are aware that some of those testing positive may have contracted the infection days to a few weeks ago but the general observation of behaviors at funerals, markets, public transport, and in communities leaves much to be desired,” he said.
In the last 24 hours, 2,060 new confirmed COVID-19 cases out of 8,278 tests conducted were recorded representing a 25% positivity rate.
“Sadly, in the last 24 hours, we recorded a record high in mortality, having recorded Forty-Nine (49) new deaths.” Dr Malama said.
This has brought the cumulative number of COVID-19 related deaths recorded to date to 1,644 (classified as 1,004 COVID deaths and 640 COVID-19 associated deaths.
“The disease we seeing is very severe implying that most of our patients require high flow oxygen. We call upon various stakeholders to join hands with us in ramping up our oxygen availability.” He said.
“Losing lives at the rate we are reporting from a preventable disease is disheartening to us all particularly that Public health and social measures when adhered can have an immediate impact on the COVID 19 country situation.” Dr. Malama said.
He said that currently there are 19,087 active cases, of whom 18,104 (95%) are under community management and 983 (5%) are admitted to COVID-19 isolation facilities and that among those currently under admission, 665 (68%) are on Oxygen therapy and 145 (15%) are in critical condition.
Dr. Malama has since reiterated the need for Zambians to strictly adhere to COVID-19 prevention guidelines and has called for heightened community interventions to stem further the spread of the virus.
“We note that today, all the voices which were doubting COVID 19 have become silent as we can now put faces to those infected, affected, and indeed those who have died. Today we see funerals in our high population density areas which were previously spared. Today we see our mortuaries struggling with space in Lusaka due to the increase in the number of deaths.” he said.