333 days of the COVID-19 lockdown and as of 24 February 2021, the Ministry of Health and Child Care reported that, the cumulative number of COVID-19 cases has increased to 35 960, after 50 new cases were reported, all were local cases and of which the highest case tally was recorded in Harare and Mash East with 13 cases each. We note that the Hospitalisation rate as at 15:00hrs on the 23rd of February 2021 went up to 154 hospitalised cases, 72 asymptomatic, 46 mild to moderate cases, 33 severe cases and 3 cases Intensive Care Units. Active cases went down to 2 094 as the total number of recoveries went up to 32 410, increasing by 122. The recovery rate went up to 90.3%. The death toll has risen to 1 456 after 8 new deaths were recorded in the last 24 hours.
The 46th day of the 2nd hard lockdown and we note the end of the lockdown which is now imminent. We urge the authorities to inform the Nation timeously on the next steps so that citizens can plan accordingly.
Critical Emerging Issue
We continue to note a higher number of active COVID-19 cases which are currently being managed at home, as compared to the hospitalised cases. We therefore highlight our concerns on home-based care and lack of the support systems to assist such households.
Reports from our networks indicate the non-operation of isolation centres in areas such as Kwekwe.
Given these challenges, we reiterate the need for the Ministry of Health and Child Care to officially communicate and publicize information regarding the state of Isolation centres and hospitals throughout all Provinces and Districts of Zimbabwe.
- We urge Government to introduce and implement measures to support home-based carers and primary care-givers in order to ease their burden and to minimize further risk of transmission.
- We urge up-scaling efforts on safe isolation centres which are not overcrowded which also cater for the needs and rights of women such as the availability of sanitary aid and sexual and reproductive health services.
Private sector procurement of vaccines
We note the policy position announced by the Deputy Minister of Child and Health Care that the private sector can procure vaccines for their members for workers and these will be delivered for free and through the public health systems.
- We urge Government to support this position by announcing the applicable measures within the system to ensure that vaccines are not sold and further are not commercialised to the detriment of the nation.
- We remind Government of the critical role to ensure that vaccines remain a public good that is equitably accessible to all.
Source: Women’s Coalition of Zimbabwe