HEALTH Minister Dr Jonas Chanda has announced that the country has recorded 1,191 new cases of COVID-19 out of 8,355 tests conducted and 14 deaths in the last 24 hours.

In a statement, Tuesday, Dr Chanda stated the cumulative number of COVID-19 related deaths recorded to date currently stands at 794.

“As we persevere in our efforts to bring the Covid-19 pandemic under control. I wish to commend our hard-working health teams on all fronts of the battle against Covid-19. Today particularly, I wish to recognise the efforts of our vigilant clinical care teams whose tireless efforts have resulted in improved patient outcomes saving many lives in our isolation facilities and communities. We also continue to see reduction in the number of Covid-19 case admissions in facilities. I urge all our gallant Health Workers on the frontlines to keep up the excellent work they are doing in order to sustain the response and stop the transmission. We also continue to employ a multisectoral approach for other interventions, including the utilization of our community structures and household, neighbour, markets, bus stations, churches, traditional leaders, headmen to efficiently carry out contact tracing. In keeping with our pledge to ensure the safety of our learners as they return to school and colleges, we are closely monitoring global trends of Covid-19 mission in schools. The US CDC have carried out a number of studies. Findings show that with adherence to guidelines and implementation of safety especially wearing of force mask measures, there is insignificant transmission in schools,” he said.

“One particular study found that Covid-19 incidence among students and staff members was low only seven out of more than 4800 students (ranging from nursery to grade (12) were found to have in-school linked Covid-19. These findings show that transmission risk within schools may be low and schools can safely open with appropriate mitigation efforts in place such as masking up, reduced student groups. quarantine of exposed persons and physical distancing. I am pleased to inform you that we are setting similar bench marks locally and are working with schools and relevant authorities. Allow me to now provide the daily update on the prevailing Covid-19 in the country. In the last 24 hours, we conducted a total of 8,355 tests. Among the samples that tested positive for Covid-19, 741 were swabs collected within the last 24-72 hours, whereas 450 were older than 72 hours. This gives a total of One Thousand One Hundred and Ninety-One (1,191) new cases,” he said.

He said 5,279 cases were under community management out of the current 5,743 active cases while 464 were admitted to COVID-19 isolation facilities.

“The breakdown of the new cases by province is as follows: 259 Copperbelt, 235 Lusaka, 151 North western, 126 Central, 116 Southern, 105 Muchinga, 65 Eastern. 57 Northern four Western, and 33 Luapula. The cumulative number of confirmed cases recorded to date now stands at 56,233. Sad, we recorded 14 new deaths recorded in the past 24 hours. The deaths were reported from the Copperbelt (5), Eastern (4), Lusaka (2), Southern (2), and Luapulo (1). The cumulative number of Covid-19 related deaths recorded to date now stands at 794, of which 359 have been classified as Covid-19 deaths; 408 as Covid-19 associated deaths; and 27 deaths are pending classification. We have discharged a further 302 recovered cases, bringing the cumulative number of recoveries to 49,696. We currently have 5.743 active cases, of which 5,279 are under community management and 464 (8.15) are currently admitted to our Covid-19 isolation facilities, with 310 on Oxygen therapy and 37 in critical condition. Let us pay heed to the simple five golden rules,” said Dr Chanda.