Health minister emphasises self-care

1805 active cases

28 July 2020 | Health

Dr Kalumbi Shangula; Minister of Health; “We can stop the spread of the pandemic when we avoid crowds, wear our masks, and stay home when we are sick.”

Namibia recorded 74 new Covid-19 cases, with positive cases being registered in almost every region of the country.

Three recoveries (Cases 292, 306 and 315) were also recorded.

The minister of health and social services Dr Kalumbi Shangula called on Namibians to take care of themselves.

“Although Walvis Bay remains the epicentre of the pandemic at present, cases are increasing in other parts of the country. This is, and must be, a source of concern for all Namibians.’

The minister said that fighting the virus calls for greater vigilance and personal responsibility of each and every Namibian.

“We must all do our part to stop the spread of this illness. It can be done. These are the realities of our times. The only way Namibia can suppress the spread of the pandemic is by following and complying with measures in place without fail. At all times, and by everyone.”

Healthcare workers

The minister said that the risk of being infected with Covid-19 are even greater for healthcare workers because of the nature of their work.

“Continue protecting yourselves with appropriate PPE at all times. You are the tip of the spear in this fight. We need you healthy to be able to treat those who fall ill and need your care and your skills. Already the number of health workers in the country are not sufficient. It is critical to ensure that they are protected and safe at all times.”

The minister also said some people have started to behave as if the pandemic is no longer a threat.

“This dangerous. A false sense of security will further put our country at risk. The virus is still here and it is continuing to spread. It spreads when people move and interact. It spreads when people fail to wear face masks or to wash and sanitize their hands.”

Shangula said that many of the recently recorded cases are not connected to other known cases and they are in individuals who have not travelled.

“This means that people are becoming infected in their localities, during their everyday activities. It is time for all Namibians to change our behaviour and do everything we can to reduce our risk.”

He cautioned those classified as high risk to take better care of themselves.

“People older than 65 and people with pre-existing conditions like diabetes or high blood pressure, are much more likely to get very sick or even die from this virus. We must thus protect those who are most at risk and help them avoid exposure to the coronavirus. We can stop the spread of the pandemic when we avoid crowds, wear our masks, and stay home when we are sick.”

Cases

Of the cases recorded on Tuesday, 56 are from Walvis Bay, 3 from Swakopmund, 1 from Omaruru, 4 from Windhoek, 2 from Oshakati, 2 from Rundu, 1 from Onandjokwe and 1 from Okahandja.

Of these, 54 are male and 20 are female, with ages ranging from 15 to 77 years. Contact tracing has been initiated.

Shangula said he constantly provides an explanation of cases to show how the virus is transmitted.

The case from Omaruru is that of a 57-year old male with no travel history and no contact with a known case. He presented with chronic backache and was tested as part of active case search on 24 July 2020.

The cases from Rosh Pinah are all employees at the Spar and contacts of a confirmed case.

The Windhoek cases involve a man (37) who was admitted to a private hospital with Covid-19 related symptoms. He has no known contact with a confirmed case and no travel history. He was tested on 27 July 2020 and the result came out positive.

A female (21) who is a staff member of the Khomas Regional Council, presented with symptoms consistent with Covid-19 and was tested on 24 July 2020. She did not have known contact with a confirmed case and no travel history. She had not been in quarantine.

According to the minister, another female (21) recently travelled from the Ohangwena region. She was quarantined on request of her family in Windhoek, although she was not reported to have been in contact with a known case and had no Covid-19 related symptoms. She was tested on 24 July 2020.

A male (28) from Windhoek also tested positive for the virus. He had no travel history, and no known contact with a confirmed case. He was tested on 23 July 2020 as he had symptoms consistent with Covid-19. Had not been in quarantine.

Further afield

The cases in Oshakati involve a healthcare worker (47) who presented with Covid-19 related symptoms. He has no travel history and only came into contact with a parcel that was handled by a confirmed case.

The second case involves a 35-year old male with no travel history and no known contact with a confirmed case. He has symptoms consistent with Covid-19.

The Rundu cases both travelled from Walvis Bay, and have been in quarantine. One is a 15-year old female learner, and one is a 36-year old male.

The case registered in Onandjokwe is a male (29) and a healthcare worker. While he was on leave, he travelled to Windhoek and Grootfontein and resumed work on 14 July 2020. He developed Covid-19 symptoms and was tested as part of an active case search. He does not have known contacts with a confirmed case.

The case in Okahandja involves a male (33) from the Oropoko Military base who recently travelled to Windhoek. He has no known contact with a confirmed case. He was tested on 23 July 2020 as he had Covid-19 related symptoms and was placed under quarantine.

Current status
Cumulative confirmed cases - 1 917
Newly confirmed - 74
Recoveries - 104
Active cases - 1 805
Deaths - 8
Total samples tested - 24 325
Active contacts - 2 969
Cumulative number of people quarantined - 6 023
Number of quarantined people discharged - 4 636
Number of people in quarantine -1 387

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