The ministry of health says it will soon roll out the Sinopharm vaccine in specified districts across the country in efforts to scale up the national vaccination programme against the covid 19 pandemic.
The Ministry of health Permanent Secretary, Kennedy Malama said the sinopharm vaccine will be administered alongside the AstraZeneca and Johnson and Johnson vaccines.
Dr Malama urged the general public to get vaccinated as it is the surest way of protecting oneself against the covid 19 pandemic and impending fourth wave at the end of this year.
“We encourage members of the public to consider being vaccinated during this period before the anticipated fourth wave at the end of this year into early next year”, said Dr Malama.
The permanent secretary assured the public that Zambia has secured enough doses of vaccines and will continue to acquire additional doses.
Dr Malama disclosed that 558,307 doses of various vaccines have been administered to Zambians out of 977,600 received in the country.
He said 248,712 people are fully vaccinated with 133,862 doses of Johnson and Johnson, 108,514 of Dose 2 of AstraZeneca and 6,336 Dose 2 of Sinopharm..
Dr Malama added that 309,595 Dose 1 vaccinations have been administered with 302,696 being AstraZeneca and 6,899 for Sinopharm.
The permanent secretary noted that the country has continued to record reducing positivity, hospitalizations and deaths, while the globe continues to record spikes.
Dr Malama said in the last 24 hours, the country recorded 130 new Covid 19 infections out of 3,777 tests conducted countrywide bringing the cumulative total of confirmed Covid 19 cases to 205,107 cases.
Dr Malama noted that globally 656,547 new cases and 10,462 deaths were recorded in the past 24 hours, with Asia continuing to account for the highest proportion of new cases at 41%, followed by North America 28%, Europe at 19%, South America 7%, and Africa at 5%.
He said Western Province recorded the highest number of new cases at 39, followed by North-western 21, Northern 18, Luapula 13, Eastern 9, Lusaka 8, Muchinga 7, Central 6 and Copperbelt 5.
The permanent secretary disclosed that three people died in the last 24 hours with Copperbelt, Eastern and North-western provinces each recording a death.
Dr Malama said the cumulative death toll from the pandemic now stands at 3,586 with 2,690 classified as Covid deaths and 896 as Covid-19 associated deaths.
He said 157 patients were discharged out of which 13 were from the Covid-19 isolation facilities and 144 from community management, bringing the cumulative number of recoveries to 199,114.
Dr Malama said there are currently 2,407 active cases, of which 2,259 are under community management and 148 are admitted to Covid-19 isolation facilities.
He disclosed that while there were 9 new admissions in the last 24hours, the number of patients requiring Oxygen therapy had fallen to below a hundred for the first time since early June, with 97 of patients on Oxygen and 32 in critical condition.
Dr Malama said government has not forgotten about responding to other public health priorities in the midst of the Covid 19 pandemic.
He said the ministry of health will continued to ensure continuity of other routine health services and said Lusaka Province, which did not conduct its child health week earlier this year, is currently conducting Child Health Week until 28th August 2021 under the theme “Striving for Universal Health Coverage even amidst the COVID-19 Pandemic”.
The permanent secretary urged families in Lusaka Province to take their children to the nearest health facility to access the various services including lifesaving vaccinations they may have missed.
Dr Malama said the Covid 19 situation in the country has continued to improve and further guidance will be given on lifting of restrictions.
He urged Zambians not to be complacent in observing prescribed Covid 19 guidelines.