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Majority of Covid victims not vaccinated 

2021-06-18  Albertina Nakale

Majority of Covid victims not vaccinated 
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Namibia continues to record a high number of coronavirus deaths with 33 fatalities reported on Wednesday.

This brings Namibia’s total number of deaths due to Covid-19 to 1 073. So far, 243 people have died in Namibia from Covid-19 in June.

The health ministry announced 33 deaths of which 12 are from Gobabis, 11 from Windhoek, two from Swakopmund and one each from Tsumeb, Grootfontein, Otjiwarongo, Okakarara, Mariental, Katima, Mulilo, Oshikuku, and Tsandi.

Of the 33 dead, 27 were not vaccinated, while the remaining only one person received the first dose of Sinopharm, and five others’ vaccination status are unknown.

In this regard, health minister Dr Kalumbi Shangula expressed great concern that among those who have died due to Covid-19 only one has received the first dose of vaccine. 

“The remainder have not been vaccinated. The benefit of vaccination is that it protects you from contracting the infection. In the event that one contracts the infection, it will hardly lead to hospitalisation and death. We once again invite the public to get vaccinated,” Shangula appealed.

The same statistics show that out of the 33 deceased persons, 29 people had comorbidities, and only four did not have pre-existing health conditions. The youngest deceased is a 26-year-old man, and the oldest is a 93-year-old woman.

On Wednesday, Namibia recorded 2 075 new Covid-19 confirmed cases from 5 823 results in the last 24 hours, which represents a 36% positivity ratio. Out of the 2 075 confirmed cases, Windhoek being declared as a Covid-19 epicentre reported a whopping 1 128 cases in a single day.

The gender distribution is 1 164 women and 911 men. The age range is from three days to 93 years.

Khomas region is still reporting more cases representing 54% for the total number of confirmed cases reported.

The same data indicates that 95 476 persons have received their first doses of Sinopharm and AstraZeneca.

The number of new persons who received their second doses of Sinopharm and AstraZeneca is 17 215.

Shangula expressed with disappointment that proponents of Ivermectin have resorted to falsehood via social media to solicit support under false pretence. 

“They assert that the number of new infections and deaths has increased following mass vaccination. There is no shred of evidence to support this narrative. I call on the public to reject such dishonesty and to avail themselves to be vaccinated,” he said.  

This comes after a group of 30 Namibian doctors appealed to the health ministry and the Namibia Medicines Regulatory Council (NMRC) to approve Ivermectin as a Covid-19 therapy.

Ivermectin is used to treat or prevent parasites in animals. Both NMRC and government have rejected the use of Ivermectin citing the lack of sufficient clinical trials to treat Covid-19 patients.

Namibia has recorded 796 new recoveries - leaving 11 678 active cases. About 400 are hospitalised, of which 84 are in the Intensive Care Unit and 56 are in high care.

The cumulative confirmed cases now stand at 69 096.

In terms of Covid-19 testing, Shangula said Namibia is now ranked number two in Africa, second only to South Africa. Namibia has a testing ratio of 94 persons per 1 000 populations.

“Testing is important because it enables us to identify new cases, clusters of infections, the extent of the spread of the virus in the country and the general trajectory of the disease to help us respond in a more effective and targeted manner. With the addition of genome sequencing capabilities, testing also allows us to identify the type of variants circulating in our country. We did not have this capacity at the peak of the second wave in December last year,” he noted.

He highlighted increased hospitalisations are placing immense pressure on the healthcare system, with respect to available personnel, facilities, equipment, supplies and commodities.

Hospitals have been struggling to keep up with Covid-19 patients, in particular, those with respiratory issues due to the high demand for oxygen and personal protective equipment. –anakale@nepc.com.na

- anakale@nepc.com.na


2021-06-18  Albertina Nakale

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