By SIMON MUNTEMBA
GOVERNMENT says the number of newly reported COVID-19 cases will likely drop in the few coming weeks.
Ministry of Health Permanent Secretary, Kennedy Malama projected that Zambia’s COVID-19 toll will be under control sooner than later.
Dr Malama however said the panacea to bring Covid-19 toll under control lies in people’s collective efforts to ensure that they adhered to the public health and social directives and measures which have been prescribed.
“Looking at the duration of the previous two waves 79 days for the first wave and 115 days for the second wave, we can predict that we have few weeks to go before we start seeing plateauing and descent of the curve in the current COVID 19 situation in our country,” Dr Malama said.
Dr Malama said government’s focus even as it fights hard to overcome the third wave was on strengthening health systems to prevent future public health shocks.
“Today we reiterate our conviction that we will bring COVID 19 under control sooner than later. We are now 48 days into the third wave and are seeing light in coming weeks,” he said.
Meanwhile, Dr Malama announced that in the last 24 hours, Government has administered 2,259 dose 1 and 3,716 dose 2 AstraZeneca vaccinations to the citizens.
He added, “Our cumulative vaccinations to date now stand at 144,457 Dose 1 vaccinations (137,558 AstraZeneca and 6,899 Sinopharm) and of these, 36,762 have gone on to receive Dose 2 vaccinations [i.e. 30,426 Dose 2 AstraZeneca (22% of those that received dose 1) and 6,336 Dose 2 Sinopharm (92% of those that received dose 1)”.
Dr Malama also said Government stance currently was that there will be no mixing of vaccines.
He also guided that as soon as one is asymptomatic, they should be allowed to get the vaccine, for those who were asymptomatic, they may access the vaccine once they complete their quarantine period. In short, he said, anyone who is unwell from any disease should wait to receive the vaccine until they are certified to be well.
He also announced that Zambia recorded 2,384 new confirmed COVID-19 cases out of 10,225 tests conducted, bringing the cumulative number of confirmed cases recorded to date to 174,789.
He said 39 COVID-19 related deaths were recorded during the same period.