THE Ministry of Health has noted a decrease in the country’s COVID-19 positivity rate, announcing only 387 new cases and 10 deaths in the last 24 hours.

In a statement, Sunday, Ministry of Health permanent secretary-technical services Dr Kennedy Malama said that the reduction of cases in high population areas was a sign that the country was on the right trajectory.

“As we conclude another epidemiological week, it is gratifying that the number of new COVID-19 confirmed cases and deaths reduced from 4,222 the previous week to 3,756 this week while deaths reduced from 134 to 78 respectively. Further the reducing trend in positivity with today’s 6% is indicating that we are on the right trajectory as a nation. We note that Lusaka, Copperbelt and Southern Provinces with high population are leading the way in positing low positivity, a further assuring feat in our response,” he stated.

“We urge members of the public not to relent and ensure compliance to the prescribed public health and social directives and measures. Even as we celebrate the evolving positive picture, we are aware that hot spots in all Provinces remain and we should not be swayed but continue with heightened preventive measures, disease intelligence and prompt and effective treatment. It is our fervent hope that we can similarly bring down the COVID-19 cases and positivity in other provinces.”

Dr Malama also announced that Zambia received 100,000 doses of Sinopharm vaccines as a donation from China.

He urged the public to ensure that they get their doses as directed by health care workers.

And Dr Malama announced that 253 Dose 1 and 405 Dose 2 AstraZeneca vaccinations as well as 2,968 doses of Johnson and Johnson were administered in the last 24 hours bringing the cumulative number of vaccinations to date now stand at 302,475 Dose 1 vaccinations (295,576 AstraZeneca and 6,899 Sinopharm) and 191,592 fully vaccinated.

Meanwhile, the permanent secretary announced that the country recorded 387 new cases out of 6,224 tests done representing a positivity rate of six percent.

“The distribution of the new cases and within province positivity are as follows: Central 20 (six percent), Copperbelt 83 (six percent), Eastern 74 (11 percent), Luapula 41 (21 percent), Lusaka 40 (two percent), Muchinga 32 (12 percent), Northern 23 (17 percent), North-western 46 (12 percent), Southern 13 (two percent), and Western 15 (eight percent). The cumulative number of confirmed cases recorded to date now stands at 200,049. 10 new COVID-19 related deaths occurred in the past 24 hours. The breakdown of the new deaths by province is as follows: Copperbelt two, Luapula two, Central one, Eastern one, Lusaka one, Muchinga one, Northern one, and North-western one. The cumulative number of COVID-19 related deaths recorded to date now stands at 3,484 (classified as 2,616 COVID-19 deaths and 868 COVID-19 associated deaths),” said Dr Malama.

“We discharged 643 patients(31 from facilities and 612 from community management), bringing the cumulative number of recoveries to 192,479 (96 percent recovered). We currently have 4,086 active cases, with 3,787 (93 percent) under community management and 299 (seven percent) admitted to our COVID-19 isolation facilities. We had 36 new admissions in the last 24 hours. Among those currently admitted, 199 (66%) are on Oxygen therapy and 74 (25 percent) are in critical condition.”