Zimbabwe Lockdown: Day 556 – WCOZ Situation Report

556 days of the COVID-19 Lockdown, and as of 5th of October 2021, the Ministry of Health and Child Care reported that, the cumulative number of COVID-19 cases had increased to 131 335 after 130 new cases all local cases, were recorded. The highest case tally was recorded in Manicaland with 38 cases. We note that the hospitalisation rate as at 15:00hrs on 4 October 2021 was 25 hospitalised cases: 1 New Admissions, 0 Asymptomatic cases, 23 mild-to-moderate cases, 2 severe cases and 0 cases in Intensive Care Units.

Active cases went down to 2 593. The total number of recoveries went up to 124 113 increasing by 166 recoveries. The recovery rate remains at 95%. A total of 11 002 people received their 1st doses of vaccine. The cumulative number of the 1st dose vaccinated now stands at 3 128 897. A total of 20 104 recipients received their second dose bringing the cumulative number of 2nd dose recipients to 2 342 966. The death toll went up to 4 629 after 2 new deaths were recorded.

Critical Emerging Issue

Rise of Vaccination Cards Black Market

We highlight with concern the blanket mandatory vaccination orders being enforced in the public and private sector and being driven by limited access to an increasing number of socio –economic activities and spaces. We are concerned by the mandatory vaccination orders which are not supported by an expanded and responsive vaccination program. We applaud the efforts of various societies in engaging with the public and undertaking significant public health awareness initiatives on the importance of vaccination. However, awareness alone will not deliver jabs in arms.

Furthermore, we are concerned with increased reports on individuals opting for the black market to secure vaccination cards as proof of vaccines without getting vaccinated. The increased pressure being created by the resumption of schools means that instances of trading in vaccination cards without vaccination are on the rise driven by sector mandates and schools mandates for both learners and teachers requiring fully vaccinated communities which is driving the demand for vaccination.

We highlight reports indicating that the costs of the vaccine cards are cheaper than the USD$30 to USD$60 PCR tests as they are reportedly being sold for between USD$15 to USD$20.

We continue to call for an expansion for the vaccination program with support to resettlement communities, agricultural services centres, grain depots and collection points, we call for mobile centres in mining communities and in new housing settlements.

We call for revision of information strategies in addressing those with concerns regarding getting vaccinated.

We call for the provision of vaccines to those in schools and education centres without vaccination mandates barring their entry.

Outstanding issues

Expansion of Vaccination Drive

We note that since the rollout of the National Vaccination Programme, a total of 13 243 200 vaccine doses have been received in Zimbabwe.

We further continue to call to attention, concerns regard to limited access to vaccines by mining, agricultural and trading communities

We highlight the expanded housing settlements and communities across the country which are underserviced in terms of clinics and health centres.

We note that as a result, these communities do not have easily accessible points to get vaccinated.

Therefore,

  • We amplify the need for expansion of vaccination to artisanal miners and mining communities.
  • We recommend for mobile vaccination points at both food and non-food traders’ markets.
  • We continue to call for vaccination points to be established in rural resettlement communities and in new housing development communities.

Source: Women’s Coalition of Zimbabwe

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