341 days of the COVID-19 lockdown and as of 4 March 2021, the Ministry of Health and Child Care reported that the cumulative number of COVID-19 cases has increased to 36 223, after 44 new cases were reported. All cases are local cases. The highest case tally was recorded in Harare with 13 cases. We note that the hospitalisation rate as of 1500hrs on the 3rd of March, 2021 went up to 146 hospitalised cases, 65 asymptomatic cases, 59 mild to moderate cases, 16 severe cases and 6 cases in Intensive Care Units. Active cases went down to 1 108 as the total number of recoveries went up to 33 632, increasing by 240 recoveries. The recovery rate now stands at 92.8%. A total of 2 688 frontline workers were vaccinated, bringing the cumulative number of the vaccinated to 30 658. The death toll now stands at 1 483 after 5 new cases were recorded.
Critical emerging issues
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 care givers 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.
COVID-19 measures complimenting lockdowns and vaccination
As citizens have resumed operations and movements following the relaxation of the lockdown, we urge stakeholders Government and citizens at large to continue to undertake significant steps to support infection control and minimisation of exposure to the virus. We call for measures that will aggressively compliment potential vaccine deployment. We remain concerned at congested offices and service points of critical government services and raise alarm that these areas are potential super spreader spaces. We have been urging the retrofitting and re-organising of public service points that have large volumes of citizens seeking to access their services to ensure that life after lockdown does not increase infection control risks. We highlight services such as the central vehicle registry, district offices in particular for the issuance of birth and death certificates, the passport offices, the driver’s license services and other such key government service points.
- We call upon concerted efforts to de congest authorised public transport.
- We call for strict compliance with sanitation measures on public transport services.
- We call for strengthened support to education centres and schools to access adequate water and sanitation services in light of the re-opening of physically schooling.
- We call for expanded community testing to ensure adequate testing and tracing regardless of the on-boarding of vaccines.
- We call for support to establish and sustenance of community-based isolation centres to alleviate the hardships of families and communities that cannot self-isolate.
- We call for supermarkets and retailers to enhance in-store monitoring and increased management of physical distancing at pay points and exists.
Source: Women’s Coalition of Zimbabwe