475 days of the COVID-19 Lockdown, and as of 16th of July 2021, the Ministry of Health and Child Care reported that, the cumulative number of COVID-19 cases had increased to 81 168 after 2 296 new cases, all local cases. The highest case tally was recorded in Harare Mashonaland at 438 cases. The hotspots updates are as follows; Mashonaland West Province- Hurungwe (54), Chegutu (92), Sanyati (54). Mashonaland Central – Guruve (31), Bindura (33). Mashonaland East-Marondera (29), Seke (60). Masvingo Province – Chiredzi (43), Gutu (43). Midlands Province – Kwekwe (24). Bulawayo Province – Nkulumane (22), Emakhandeni (40) and Northern Suburbs (77), Harare Province (438).
We note that the Hospitalisation rate as at 15:00hrs on the 15th of the July 2021 was 762 hospitalised cases: 78 New Admissions, 265 Asymptomatic cases, 423 mild-to-moderate cases, 57 severe cases and 17 cases in Intensive Care Units.
Active cases went up to 27 509. The total number of recoveries went up to 51 139 increasing by 1 465 recoveries. The recovery rate remains at 63%. A total of 59 750 people received their 1st doses of vaccine. The cumulative number of the 1st dose vaccinated now stands at 1 096 002. A total of 5 128 recipients received their second dose bringing the cumulative number of 2nd dose recipients to 635 738. The death toll went up to 2 520 after 102 new deaths were recorded.
We note the high number of deaths and note further that these include 30 non-recorded deaths from the 12th to the 14th of July 2021. We note that the daily record for the 16th remains the highest number of daily recorded deaths at 72 deaths. We accordingly draw attention to the increasing death statistics and accordingly, urge rapid improvement in this regard.
Critical Emerging Issues
Quality of Care of COVID-19 Patients
We highlight growing reports from communities regarding the poor quality of care being presently availed to COVID-19 patients in hospitals in some instances.
We fully recognise the dire straits faced by frontline workers who are continuing to provide critical life-saving services whilst at great risk due to severe shortages of PPE and other supportive equipment.
Further, we remain highly aware of the limitations of the health care centres which are housing the provision of services amid significant infrastructure deficits and limitations in medical stocks and supplies.
- We remind the Government and all health service centres to respect and uphold the Zimbabwe Patients Charter.
- We call upon the Government to escalate the provision of PPEs and other critical supplies to health centres buckling under the stain of increased hospitalisations.
- We call upon the Government to engage in sustainable dialogue with the workers in the sector to address long outstanding issues
Socio-economic impacts of COVID-19
We continue to amplify our concern on the socio-economic impacts of COVID-19 particularly that the majority of women in Zimbabwe and women-led households are facing the biggest impacts in food security, income loss, and care-giving burdens. We emphasize the need for prioritization of women’s access to social safety nets during COVID-19, taking due cognisance of the fact that a majority of women in the informal sector, such as the cross-border traders, have suffered severe loss of livelihoods due to the many lockdowns imposed since March 2020.
- We continue to recommend that Government announces the direct distribution of basic commodities and food in communities similar to the subsidized mealie meal distribution program.
- We continue to call for the resuscitation of the COVID-19 support scheme.
- We call for the adequate funding of National Social Protection Policy Framework.
- We therefore urge Government to expand social safety nets and offset economic impacts for COVID19.
- We reinforce our calls for the provision of support for households who are no longer able to sustain themselves due to loss of livelihoods, especially women-led households.
Source: Women’s Coalition of Zimbabwe (WCoZ)