Zimbabwe: Zim Predicts a Sharp Increase in COVID-19 Cases

22 June 2020

The government says it expects COVID-19 cases to rise rapidly in the few weeks due to an increase in the number of tests being conducted.

To date, the country has recorded 489 cases with the majority of these being from returnees. Of concern to the government has been the rise in local cases, which have seen a sharp increase in the last week.

Six people have since succumbed to the virus with the latest two cases being of two elderly women who were reported to have underlying health conditions.

This was after more than two months of having no COVID-19 related death being recorded.

There were 62 confirmed Covid-19 cases recorded on Thursday, of which 20 were local infections. On Friday, 16 cases were confirmed with 11 being local cases.

Chief co-ordinator in the Office of the President and Cabinet Dr Agnes Mahomva alluded this increase to increased testing rather increase in the rate of infection.

"This process is bound to increase the number of people being tested and the more the people are tested, the more the cases we are also bound to confirm," she said.

Dr Mahomva added that the government is deliberately increasing testing "high-risk groups" in quarantine facilities, patients in hospital admissions and health workers.

"We have since started contact tracing of the local transmissions as we always do with any confirmed case and we are hoping to get finer details once that process is complete," said Dr Mahomva.

The government has been on an extensive drive to test returnees, health workers and those in hospital admissions.

As of a week ago, a total of 26 451 antigen-based, or PCR, tests have been done in the country from which 486 tested positive. A further, 35 946 other tests were conducted through rapid diagnostic testing.

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