DESPITE the warnings and clear examples of fatalities across the globe, Zambia continues to record dangerously high numbers of coronavirus infections, but worse still is the apparent disregard that people continue to have towards limiting the spread of the disease.
The Ministry of Health continues to give daily updates that tells the heart-breaking tale of the imminent health and economic crisis that we face as a nation.
Already Covid-19 test kits are being rationed due to the global breakdown of the supply chain processes. Suspended factory operations, lock-downs and limited flights have all played a part in hampering Government plans to quickly isolate those known to have been infected.
Ministry of health spokesperson, Dr Abel Kabalo on announcing that Covid-19 cases had crossed the 7,000 mark – highlighted the fact that the general public was still not adhering to health guidelines and hence 200 fatalities and counting are likely.
More sobering is the fact that Covid-19 has reached all the ten provinces with more and more districts now recording cases.
The spokesperson indicated that of the three new Covid-19 related deaths, one was a female adult from Itezhi Tezhi, while another one was a 43-year-old female who was admitted to a private health facility.
Our health services can only do so much to help in managing cases of Covid-19 but there is absolutely no guarantee that one will walk out of treatment centre healed.
In the daily Covid-19 update, Dr Kabalo further announced that a 71-year-old male, known to be hypertensive who was being treated for severe pneumonia at Levy Mwanawasa Isolation Centre died.
“Among the active cases, 45 are on oxygen support. Six patients are critical with five admitted to the Intensive Care Unit.
“In addition, among the positive cases, the proportion presenting with severe disease has also increased significantly,” Dr Kabalo said.
Diabetes, hypertension, asthma are proving to be dangerous contributors to fatalities in health facilities and more disturbingly in homes.
While, many Covid-19 cases are managed at home, some are only given an option of seeking professional medical help when it is too late.
The key is to avoid possible infection all together.
The numbers tell a scary story.
We do not appear to be afraid of the effects of coronavirus on our senior citizens or indeed the everyday person who one day was enjoying a shopping spree at a mall and a week later has lost their life to corona virus.
The message has been clear: if you have no reason to be out, stay home.
Corona virus does not move on its own, it is people who move it.
Life under the new norm demands consistent hand washing and sanitising, masking up and maintaining social distance. There are many people oblivious to the fact that they are currently spreading corona virus with every bus ride that they take or even the idle chatter by a market place.
Funeral and wedding gatherings have also been pin-pointed as a conduit of the disease, despite the warnings.
Six months ago, Zambia had 3 coronavirus cases but now we are past 7,000 and there are still those who believe business as normal can continue. There are hand washing stations and sanitisers at most public facilities and face masks are readily available, let us put the right amount of energy towards halting the spread of the disease.
Do not be a statistic of a confirmed case, recovered, death or worse brought in dead.
Do not ignore information about coronavirus and act responsibly.
Stay home, sanitise, wear a mask if you have to go out and maintain social distance – if the Covid-19 numbers are to be brought under control.