LILONGWE-(MaraviPost)-In the past 24 hours, Malawi has registered 65 new COVID-19 cases, 78 new recoveries and eight new deaths. All cases are locally transmitted: 19 from Lilongwe, 11 from Blantyre, five each from Mangochi and Mzimba North, four from Kasungu, three each from Dowa, Karonga, Ntcheu, and Salima, two each from Neno and Nsanje, and one each from Chikwawa, Machinga, Mchinji, Mulanje, and Zomba Districts.

Eight new deaths were registered in the past 24 hours: three from Lilongwe, and one each from Salima, Mchinji, Mzimba South, Nkhotakota, and Chitipa Districts .All the new deaths registered in the past 24 hours had never received any COVID-19 vaccine.

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 60,728 cases including 2,203 deaths (Case Fatality Rate is at 3.63%). Of these cases, 2,611 are imported infections and 58,117 are locally transmitted.

Cumulatively, 48,644 cases have now recovered (recovery rate of 80.1%) and 232 were lost to follow-up. This brings the total number of active cases to 9,649. In the past 24 hours, there were 12 new admissions (ten of the new admissions are not vaccinated, one is fully vaccinated while one had received one dose of AstraZeneca vaccine) in the treatment units while 14 cases were discharged.

Currently, a total of 113 active cases are currently hospitalised (of these, 10 are in critical condition and all are not vaccinated): 27 in Lilongwe, 14 in Blantyre, 13 in Zomba, 11 in Mzimba North, six in Mangochi, five each in Karonga and Thyolo, four in Chiradzulu, three each in Dowa and Balaka, two each in Salima, Nkahata Bay, Mulanje, Mchinji, Ntcheu, Phalombe, Chitipa, and Nsanje, and one each in Neno, Mzimba South, Nkhotakota, Rumphi, Machinga, and Chikwawa Districts.

On testing, in the past 24 hours, 779 COVID-19 tests were conducted. Of these, 386 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 7,7% while a weekly positivity rate (seven days moving average) is at 7.2%.

Cumulatively, 389,546 tests have been conducted in the country so far. On COVID-19 vaccination, a total
of 904,529 vaccine doses has been administered in the country so far.

Cumulatively 477,648 and 216,513 people have received the first dose and second dose of AstraZeneca vaccine
respectively while 210,368 people have received Johnson and Johnson vaccine.

Over the past 24 hours, 1,855 and 1,791 people have received first dose and second of AstraZeneca vaccine
respectively while 2,682 people have received Johnson and Johnson vaccine. Cumulatively, 426,881 people are fully vaccinated.

We continue to observe a downward trend in the number of COVID-19 new cases and admissions in the treatment units. Though this is the case, we still have community transmission of the disease hence the need to continue strictly adhering to the preventive and containment measures.

We are at a stage that we need to sustain the downward trend being observed and the only way that this can be achieved only if all of us can continue to strictly adhere to the COVID-19 preventive and containment measures as well as getting vaccinated for those that aged 18 years and above.

We need to supress further the human to human transmission of the disease and this will help our country to prevent the resurgence of the disease.

The time to act is now as COVID-19 has greatly affected all aspects of our lives and the only way to return to normal is to act in unity, adhere to the measures, get screened for COVID-19 if you have the symptoms, seek care early if you are COVID-19 confirmed positive and you are experiencing severe symptoms such as shortness of breath, loss of speech, chest pain and loss of movement.

On COVID-19 vaccination my special appeal goes to those that had received the first dose of AstraZeneca and 12 weeks have elapsed, that they should get their second dose of the AstraZeneca at the nearest vaccination site. This will ensure that they are fully protected against COVID-19 thereby reducing the risk of developing severe disease, hospitalization and deaths when they contract COVID-19 infection.

For the vaccine to work as expected it is important that we receive the vaccines as recommended i.e. for AstraZeneca vaccine, for full protection, a person is expected to receive two doses given at 12 weeks’ interval while for Johnson and Johnson (Janssen) vaccine, a single dose will ensure full protection.

We have adequate COVID19 vaccine stocks in all our vaccination sites. Apart from the vaccinations, there is need for each one of us (regardless of being vaccinated or not) to strictly adhere to the COVID-19 preventive and containment measures.

No one is safe until everyone else is safe. Get Fully 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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