Minister of Health Sylvia T. Masebo has disclosed that Zambia recorded 20 Covid-19 deaths and 3,292 new cases in the past one week.
This shows a reduction compared to last week’s recorded numbers of 5,498 new cases, 178 new admissions, and 35 deaths.
Ms. Masebo, the Chongwe Member of Parliament, said it was pleasing that for the fourth consecutive week, Zambia has seen a reduction in the numbers of Covid infections and deaths being recorded.
She attributed the development to concerted efforts from various stakeholders fighting the pandemic.
“Each week, we review our performance in terms of numbers and I am pleased to report that for the fourth consecutive week, we have seen a reduction in the numbers recorded. Our concerted efforts to control this pandemic have certainly paid off. We owe this progress, to ourselves, our families and our communities and let us ensure that we sustain this positive momentum,” Ms. Masebo said.
“In the past week, we recorded a total of 3,292 new cases, 94 new admissions, and 20 deaths. This marks a notable reduction compared to last week’s recorded numbers of 5,498 new cases, 178 new admissions, and 35 deaths. Our overall positivity rate has similarly shown encouraging reduction over the past five weeks, from a weekly positivity rate of 32% at the start of the year, to 11% this past week,” she said.
Meanwhile, the Minister of Health is concerned over the increasing number of children getting infected with Covid-19.
“Clearly, we have made significant progress in controlling COVID-19. However, the pandemic is not anywhere near over. We have observed an increasing number of children getting infected. Currently, children represent about 10% of all COVID-19 cases recorded in Zambia. Sadly, we have lost 276 children throughout the 4 COVID-19 waves,” Ms. Masebo said.
“Of these, 167 have been deaths among those aged 12-17 years. It is for this reason that we continue to emphasise the need to adhere to the ‘five golden rules’ as well as advocating for vaccination against COVID-19 among those children aged 12 years and above. Zambia recently introduced vaccinations against COVID-19 for persons 12 years and above. We have seen a growing interest among this age group in getting vaccinated against this deadly but yet preventable disease,” she said.
Ms. Masebo reminded the nation that children of all ages can get COVID-19 and experience its complications.
“Firstly, it is important to acknowledge that children of all ages can get COVID-19 and experience its complications. While children just like adults are as likely to get COVID-19 they usually are less likely to become severely ill; but yet still transmit the infection to others. However, some children with COVID-19 need to be hospitalized, treated in the intensive care unit or placed on a ventilator to help them breathe. In Zambia, this has been true especially during the 3rd and 4th COVID-19 waves. This is more so in the current wave as the Omicron variant of the coronavirus has been spreading quickly,” she said.
During a media briefing, Ms. Masebo further updated the nation on Covid-19 statistics in the last 24 hours.
“In the last 24 hours we recorded 125 new COVID-19 cases out of 1,938 tests conducted countrywide, giving an overall national positivity of 6%. This is the fourth consecutive day that our positivity has been below 10%. Similarly, at provincial level, we have seen encouragingly low positivity rates, and today with the exception of Central and Eastern provinces, all provinces are below 10%. We admitted 6 new patients in the last 24hrs, and we discharged 710 patients from both home management and facility, leaving 3,158 active cases nationwide. Of the current active cases, 69 are admitted to hospital with 32 on oxygen therapy and 8 classified as critically ill. Of the admitted, 88% are unvaccinated patients.”
She added:”On a sad note, we report two deaths in the last 24 hours, one from Muchinga Province and the other one from North-western province. We have recorded a total of 3,917 deaths to date, all of whom were the most important person in someone’s life. May their souls rest in peace.”