478 days of the COVID-19 Lockdown, and as of 19th of July 2021, the Ministry of Health and Child Care reported that, the cumulative number of COVID-19 cases had increased to 85 732 after 2 113 new cases all local cases, were recorded. The highest case tally was recorded in Harare Mashonaland East at 330 cases. The hotspots updates are as follows; Mashonaland West Province – Hurungwe (57), Kariba (17) Sanyati (61), Mashonaland Central – Bindura (49), Centenary (74). Mashonaland East-Marondera (67), Goromonzi (68). Masvingo Province – Chiredzi (40), Mwenenzi (31). Midlands Province – Kwekwe (38). Bulawayo Province – Nkulumane (41), Emakhandeni (53) and Northern Suburbs (106), Harare Province (93).
We note that the Hospitalisation rate as at 15:00hrs on the 18th of the July 2021 was 915 hospitalised cases: 63 New Admissions, 303 Asymptomatic cases, 488 mild-to-moderate cases, 93 severe cases and 31 cases in Intensive Care Units.
Active cases went down to 27 321. The total number of recoveries went up to 55 714 increasing by 2 261 recoveries. The recovery rate goes up marginally from 63% to 65%. A total of 40 056 people received their 1st doses of vaccine. The cumulative number of the 1st dose vaccinated now stands at 1 184 435. A total of 2 049 recipients received their second dose bringing the cumulative number of 2nd dose recipients to 643 203. The death toll went up to 2 697 after 75 new deaths were recorded.
Critical Emerging Issues
Measures to Contain COVID-19 in Public Service
We note with concern the directive to the Public Service Commission regarding the reduction of operational staff to 10% from 40% as a means to ensure infection control. We remain concerned at the prevalence rate of COVID-19 infections of Public Servants. We note with concern the operational constraints still in existence for the public service to operate digitally.
- We continue to call for retro fitting of public service offices and operational areas to ensure strong reforms to sustained change in operations.
- We urge the expedition of the provision of tools trade for public service and the accounting of the programs to digitize Government by the Ministry of Information, Communication and Technology.
- We continue to call for a Commission of inquiry on the management of COVID-19 in Zimbabwe.
Expansion of Vaccination Centres to Private Health Care Centres
We commend the extension of the vaccination program to private health institutions with a cap on administration fees. We commend this policy as it rapidly expands the vaccination centres in operation and the potential reach of the vaccination program.
- We call for vigilance in maintaining free access to vaccine for the public in order to avoid potential private sector monopoly.
- We call for private health institutions to roll out pre-booking systems to support vaccination roll out within their institutions
We continue to note that communities have a greater burden of care in responding to COVID-19 patients. In the context of the community-managed COVID-19 patients, we continue to emphasize that Zimbabwe’s health response is being led by households providing home based care. We therefore amplify our concerns on home-based care and lack of the support systems to assist such households. 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, as the whole country is battling with increased infections;
- 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 community isolation centres which are not overcrowded and which integrate the needs and rights of women such as the availability of sanitary aid, sexual and reproductive health services.
Source: Women’s Coalition of Zimbabwe (WCoZ)