WALVIS BAY - More resources and personnel would be deployed to the Erongo region while private testing institutions will be contracted to clear up the current backlog of Covid-19 results at Walvis Bay. Information minister Peya Mushelenga yesterday announced that Cabinet has directed the health ministry to expedite the recruitment of additional health personnel to assist overwhelmed health workers who this week said they cannot cope with the intense and draining work of caring for patients, as both isolation and quarantine facilities are under severe strain. Erongo currently has 80 health personnel, of which some have tested positive for Covid-19, while some are in quarantine after coming into contact with confirmed cases. The ministry was also directed to prioritise the testing of the security cluster personnel so that they are released from quarantine facilities as soon as possible. The information minister also indicated that the works and transport ministry should avail the remaining 45 vehicles that were not delivered earlier to the region, while an additional 45 vehicles should be availed by line ministries and institutions to the security cluster for their operations during the fight against coronavirus. “Cabinet also directed that the home affairs, safety and security ministry approach the treasury for an additional N$23 million for the operations of Covid-19 response,” Mushelenga said.
Namibia has seen an increasing number of new infections over the last couple of weeks, with health minister Dr Kalumbi Shangula announcing 120 new confirmed cases from a total of 522 results.
A total of 106 are from Walvis Bay, five from Swakopmund, seven from Windhoek, while Keetmanshoop and Katima Mulilo recorded one case each. “All are Namibians and are in stable conditions. Contact tracing has been initiated already,” Shangula said yesterday. He also indicated that 19 782 samples have been tested so far, of which 1 522 are positive, while 657 people are currently in quarantine. The death toll remains at seven, while 69 people have recovered so far.