Over 4.5 million Covid-19 doses are expected in Zambia soon to address the overwhelming demand for vaccination from the general public, Ministry of Health Permanent Secretary Kennedy Malama has revealed.
ZANIS reports that Dr. Malama has since appealed to the general public not to panic as the government has sourced the vaccines from cooperating partners with 4.4 million doses of Johnson and Johnson vaccine having been secured under the Africa Vaccine Acquisition Trust (AVAT).
Dr. Malama said an additional 165,600 doses of Johnson and Johnson vaccine has been mobilized from the United States of America as part of dose sharing allocated to Zambia under the COVAX mechanism.
He said 100,000 doses of Sinopharm will come from China to help meet the rising demand for vaccines in the country.
Dr. Malama has disclosed that the country’s cumulative vaccinations stand at 189, 408 for dose one and 54, 410 for dose two.
He explained that vaccinations for AstraZeneca dose one stand at 182,509 and dose one for Sinopharm at 6,899, while dose two for AstraZeneca is at 48,074 and that of Sinopharm is at 6,336.
Meanwhile, Dr. Malama said in the last 24 hours, 21,610 first doses and 6,424 second doses of AstraZeneca were administered across the country.
The Permanent Secretary has since thanked the cooperating partners, the United Nations family, private sector and other stakeholders for their continued unwavering support towards Zambia’s Covid-19 response programme.
Dr. Malama announced that the Africa CDC, has pledged to support Zambia with genomic sequencing equipment and start up reagents that will strengthen capacity to conduct routine genomic sequencing of up to 500 per day.
He said despite escalating numbers of the Covid-19 pandemic in neighbouring countries, the government remains cautious of the risk posed, particularly the importation of variants.
He further noted that globally 554,510 new cases and 8,715 deaths were recorded in the past 24 hours, with Asia continuing to account for the highest proportion of new cases at 39 percent, followed by Europe at 24 percent, South America 19 percent, North America 11 percent and Africa at 8 percent.
He said the government is delighted with the sustained reduction in admissions to hospitals and urged the general public to do more in adhering to the public health guidelines and measures.
Dr. Malama announced that 1,580 new cases had been detected in the last 24 hours out of 7,935 tests conducted, bringing the cumulative total of confirmed Covid-19 cases to 182,129 since the pandemic broke out in Zambian in March 2020.
He disclosed that 42 people died in the last 24 hours with Copperbelt recording 10, Lusaka and Eastern provinces 6 each, Southern and Central 4 each, Western, North-western , Luapula and Muchinga all recording 3 each, while Northern Provinces had no deaths.
Dr. Malama said the cumulative death toll from the pandemic now stands at 2,991 with 2,212 classified as Covid deaths and 779 as Covid-19 associated deaths.
He said 1,464 patients were discharged from the Covid-19 isolation facilities and 1,330 from home management, bringing the cumulative number of recoveries to 166,388.
Dr. Malama said there are currently 12,740 active cases, of which 11,869 are under community management and 881 are admitted to Covid-19 isolation facilities.
He revealed that there were 141 new admissions in the last 24 hours compared to 162 the previous day, with 669 on oxygen therapy and 113 in critical condition.
The Permanent Secretary has meanwhile warned against self-diagnosis, prescription and medication of Covid-19 and that the panacea for combating the pandemic lies in strong adherence to the public health, social measures and vaccination.
Dr. Malama has reiterated his call for Zambians to avoid super spreader events.
He disclosed that the government has continued with the country-wide monitoring and enforcement of public places such as markets, shopping malls, bars, saloons, lodges, and night clubs among others to curtail further transmission of Covid-19 in communities.
He said in the last 24 hours, the government closed 74 premises and served 216 premises with notices while 1,371 were found to be compliant from 1,673 premises that were inspected.