Twenty new Covid-19 patients infected within Zimbabwe are among the record 62 confirmed cases registered yesterday, bringing the national total to 463.
The other 42 were among returning citizens and residents in official quarantine centres, where most of Zimbabwe’s cases are caught, justifying the official policy of using centres to quarantine all returning residents for at least eight days, although most people testing negative on two tests are allowed to finish their 21-day quarantine at home.
Infections within the centres can be quickly isolated and so do not spread into the community.
According to the latest daily update from the Ministry of Health and Child Care, of the 524 antigen-based (PCR) tests done yesterday, 24 returnees from South Africa tested positive while others were from the United States (5), Zambia (4), Lesotho (4), Botswana (3) and Namibia (2).
But the other 20 infected within Zimbabwe are the ones who require immediate follow-ups and which are of greater concern to health authorities. Already these authorities know that nine of the 20 are contacts of known patients, but investigations are now in progress to find the source of infection in the other 11.
Of the new cases, Bulawayo reported 32, Harare (15), Mashonaland Central (1), Mashonaland West (2), Midlands (8) and Matabeleland North (4).
Testing has established that another patient is fully recovered, bringing the total of confirmed recoveries to 63. The country’s death toll stands at 4.
By yesterday the global death toll from Covid-19 reached 449 898 from 8 397 036 confirmed cases. It is generally accepted that because of undertesting, far more people have been infected although because all deaths from all causes in all countries now have to be certified, the Covid-19 death toll statistics are accurate.
The number of confirmed recoveries has reached 4 104 529, although once again it is accepted that more have recovered but were never tested.
South Africa, the worst affected country in Southern Africa, now has 80 412 confirmed cases, but the death toll is 1 674. South Africa’s number of confirmed cases is now almost equal to the just over 83 000 in China.