544 days of the COVID-19 Lockdown, and as of 23rd of September 2021, the Ministry of Health and Child Care reported that the cumulative number of COVID-19 cases had increased to 129 134 after 330 new cases, all local cases, were recorded. The highest case tally was recorded in Mash Central with 93 cases. We note that the Hospitalisation rate as at 15:00hrs on 22nd September 2021 was 103 hospitalised cases: 4 new admissions, 23 asymptomatic cases, 62 mild-to-moderate cases, 24 severe cases and 4 cases in Intensive Care Units.
Active cases went up to 2 693. The total number of recoveries went up to 121 841 increasing by 188 recoveries. The recovery rate stands at 94%. A total of 15 897 people received their 1st dose of vaccine. The cumulative number of the 1st dose vaccinated now stands at 3 008 335. A total of 27 089 recipients received their second dose bringing the cumulative number of 2nd dose recipients to 2 157 642. The death toll went up to 4 600 after 8 new deaths were recorded.
We note with commendation the measures introduced in the Education sector to intensify infection control and strengthen safety controls for learners. We urge expansion of this campaign drive to public spaces such as markets and public transport.
Critical Emerging Issue
Expansion of Vaccination Drive
We note the cumulative number of the 1st dose vaccinated has now surpassed 3 million mark, now standing at 3 008 335. While appreciating the increased uptake of vaccination by citizens, we draw attention to the severe limitation of the vaccination drive particularly in the face of increasing social and economic restrictions based on proof of vaccination. We continue to raise concerns that mining, agricultural and trading communities have limited access to vaccination. We highlight the expanded housing settlements and communities across the country which are underserviced in terms of clinics and health centres. As a result, these communities do not have easily accessible points to get vaccinated. In order to ensure that no one is left behind in the vaccination drive,
- We continue to call for vaccination centres to be located at Agro centres, grain depots and collection points.
- We continue to call for mobile vaccination points at both food and non-food traders’ markets.
- We continue to call for vaccination points to be established in mining communities, rural resettlement and new housing development communities.
Vigilance and safety protocols in public spaces
We continue to highlight monitoring reports nationwide indicating a significant drop in adherence to masking up, and in some cases, improper use of masks by citizens in public spaces. We have noted the increased non-adherence to COVID-19 in public spaces such as supermarkets, public transport and banking queues. As such we raise concern that such careless behavioural attitude by citizens may trigger a potential fourth wave, especially in light of the relaxation of the lockdown, therefore concerned with infection control and safety protocols for learners.
- We therefore urge constant robust campaign and awareness-raising on COVID-19 and vaccines.
- We continue to urge businesses to strictly observe safety protocols such as fumigation of work spaces, provision of PPE to workers and constant temperature checks.
- We amplify our calls for an inclusive vaccine roll-out which ensures vaccine equity and equality amongst urban and rural populace.
Source: Women’s Coalition of Zimbabwe