LILONGWE-(MaraviPost)-In the past 24 hours, Malawi has registered 372 new COVID-19 cases, 203 new recoveries and 33 new deaths. Of the new cases, 370 cases are locally transmitted: 101 from Lilongwe, 99 from Blantyre, 38 from Mzimba North, 34 from Zomba, 20 from Mzimba South, 11 from Dedza, 10 from Mchinji, eight from Nkhotakota, six each from Chikwawa and Mangochi, five each from Dowa and Salima, four from Ntcheu, three each from Balaka, Karonga, Ntchisi, and Thyolo, two each from Kasungu, Machinga, and Mulanje, and one each from Mwanza, Neno, Nkhata Bay, and Nsanje while two cases are imported and both are from Mchinji District.

33 new deaths were registered in the past 24 hours; five from Blantyre, three each from Lilongwe, Mangochi, Salima, and Mchinji, two each from Balaka, Dedza, Chiradzulu, and Ntchisi, and one each from Dowa, Kasungu, Mulanje, Mzimba South, Thyolo, Ntcheu, Chikwawa, and Mwanza Districts.

To the families that have lost their loved ones during this pandemic, may you find peace, hope and love during this difficult time. May the souls of the departed rest in peace.

Cumulatively, Malawi has recorded 49,009 cases including 1,513 deaths (Case Fatality Rate is at 3.08%). Of these cases, 2,564 are imported infections and 46,445 are locally transmitted.

Cumulatively, 36,622 cases have now recovered (recovery rate of 74.7%) and 232 were lost to follow-up. This brings the total number of active cases to 10,642.

In the past 24 hours, there were 59 new admissions in the treatment units while 34 cases were discharged.

Currently, a total of 377 active cases are currently hospitalised: 108 in Blantyre, 79 in Lilongwe, 31 in Zomba, 16 in Mzimba North, 15 in Kasungu, 13 in Dowa, 11 in Mangochi, 10 in Salima, nine each in Mzimba South and Nkhotakota, eight each in Thyolo and Chiradzulu, seven each in Mulanje and Neno, six each in Mchinji, Karonga, Balaka, and Ntchisi, four in Rumphi, three each in Ntcheu, Phalombe, Machinga, and Chikwawa, two in Nsanje, and one each in Nkhata Bay, Dedza, Chitipa, and Mwanza Districts.

On testing, in the past 24 hours, 1,364 COVID-19 tests were conducted. Of these, 607 tests were through SARS-CoV-2 Antigen Rapid Diagnostic test while the rest were through RT-PCR.

The positive cases out of the total number tested (past 24 hours) translates to a positivity rate of 27.2% while a weekly positivity rate (seven days moving average) is at 24.9%.

Cumulatively, 323,864 tests have been conducted in the country so far. On COVID-19 vaccination, cumulatively 385,242 and 43,165 people have received the first dose and second dose respectively.

The COVID-19 vaccination program has resumed today and data for those vaccinated today will be reported tomorrow.

A total of 428,407 vaccine doses has been administered in the country so far.

The COVID-19 vaccination program has resumed today and I would like to thank all the health workers in the country and the leadership of the Directors of Health and Social Services for making sure that the vaccines and personnel are available in the vaccination sites.

Let me also extend my appreciation to the public for taking our call to get vaccinated seriously as evidenced by the high turnout of people in the vaccination sites.

Let me emphasize that for us to win the fight against COVID-19, we really need to utilize all the available tools available such as adhering to the preventive and containment measures and getting vaccinated for those

Let me encourage everyone that is eligible for the vaccine to ensure that they are vaccinated against COVID-19.

The current vaccine stock that we have is the AstraZeneca vaccine and for one to be fully protected it requires two doses given at 12 weeks’ interval.

As the COVID-19 vaccination program has resumed, I would like to remind the pubic that the Covid-19 vaccines are not contraindicated in pregnant and lactating mothers.

The benefits of pregnant women getting the vaccine and being protected from COVID-19 disease far outweighs the reported increased risk of having severe disease which can lead to death amongst pregnant women.

Lactating mothers can also get the vaccine and continue to breastfeed their children safely.

Further, although there is no contraindication on the uptake of alcohol and the AstraZeneca vaccine, moderate use of alcohol around the time when one gets the Covid-19 vaccine shouldn’t affect the immune response.

It may be best to abstain for a brief period before and after vaccination.

Guidance which applies for all vaccines is that one should refrain from alcohol 3 days after each injection. This will provide adequate time to assess oneself before and after the vaccines so that we reduce missing of any adverse effects following immunization.

No one is safe until everyone else is safe. Get Vaccinated! Wear Face Mask! Protect yourself.
Protect your loved ones. Protect everyone. Call toll free 929.

Hon. Khumbize Kandodo Chiponda, MP, MINISTER OF HEALTH

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