MINISTER of Health Dr Jonas Chanda has announced that the country has recorded 1,264 new COVID-19 cases out of 10,523 tests done with 12 deaths and 1,747 recoveries in the last 24 hours.

In a statement, Thursday, Dr Chanda stated that of the 388 patients admitted to various health facilities, 252 were on oxygen therapy while 24 were in a critical condition.

“In the last 24 hours, our labs in the 10 provinces processed a total of 10,523 tests. Out of these, 1,264 new cases were recorded. This brings the cumulative number of cases recorded countrywide to 42,213. We have discharged a further 1,747 patients from both our facilities and home-based management bringing the cumulative number recoveries 31,522 (75 percent recovery). On a sad note, continue to record a number of COVID-19 related deaths daily; in the last 24 hours, we recorded 12 new deaths countrywide. The cumulative number of deaths recorded now stands at 597. The deaths have been classified as follows, 233 COVID-19 deaths; 345 associated; 19 pending classification. We currently have a total of 10,094 active cases under case management. Of these, 388 patients are admitted tour various health facilities with 252 on oxygen therapy and 24 are critical; while 9,706 are under community management,” he stated.

The Minister assured the nation that there would be no compromise in the quality of healthcare even in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We have continued to employ a multi sectoral approach to ensure that our efforts have the widest reach. We are collaborating with community development colleagues in order to incorporate response activities at the community level. In our bid to ensure the provision of quality health care even in the face of this pandemic, we continue to expand our capacity including human resources, infrastructure and equipment let me assure you that there will be no compromise on the quality of healthcare,” Dr Chanda said.

He urged citizens to avoid excessive use of home remedies and ensure they exercise the necessary safety precautions.

“We are keenly monitoring the appearance of various remedies on the market and let me assure you that we will clamp down on any purported remedies that have not under gone the due regulatory scrutiny including research, efficacy and safety profiles. We have received some reports regarding excessive use of home remedies even as we continue to encourage the use of these proven remedies, we remind our people to exercise the necessary safety precautions,” said Dr Chanda.

He expressed concern over the holding of super spreader events such as funerals without adhering to the laid down guidelines.