Finance Minister Dr Bwalya Ngandu gets tested for coronavirus: Health Minister Chilufya reveals

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Health Minister Dr. Chitalu Chilufya has disclosed that the Minister of Finance Dr. Bwalya Ngandu was under quarantine but has been tested for COVID-19.

Minister of Health, Dr.Chitalu Chilufya announced at today’s briefing, where he also mentioned that Home Affairs Minister Stephen Kapmyongo was also under quarantine and had too tested negative just like the finance minister.

Dr. Chilufya emphasized the need to respect the privacy of individuals when it comes to disclosure of their Coronavirus cases and test results.

“We will be transparent with the matter but we will respect the privacy of patients,” he said as he also announced that the Finance Minister consented to have his COVID-19 results made public after he was quarantined.

Dr. Chilufya said that he was happy with the positive response that the Ministry of Health has continued to receive from people who notice some symptoms that are related to those of COVID-19.

He cited Minister of Finance Bwalya N’gandu and his Home Affairs counterpart Stephen Kamyongo as being among many other people that had volunteered to undergo self-quarantine after visiting COVID high risk country.

At the same briefing, Dr Chilufya announced that two out of the 38 coronavirus patients, who are admitted to isolation centers in Lusaka and Copperbelt provinces, have tested negative for the virus and will be discharged tomorrow.

The patients initially tested positive for the disease and have been in the isolation centres where their condition was being monitored for more than 14 days.

Minister of Health Chitalu Chilufya said the two patients’ symptoms have since disappeared hence they tested negative.

Dr. Chilufya informed the nation during the COVID-19 update in Lusaka today that in the last 24 hours, the Ministry of Health followed up 266 new alerts who all proved to be non-cases of coronavirus.

This therefore means that the country has in the last 24 hours not recorded any new cases of COVID-19 and the number of patients remains at 38.

Dr. Chilufya described the condition of the 38 patients currently in isolation centers as stable.

“In the last 24 hours, we have no new cases of COVID-19, and the number still stands at 39 with one death and all our 38 patients are still in various isolation facilities, two on the Copperbelt while the rest are in Lusaka and are all stable under the care of our specialized team,” he said.

Dr. Chilufya disclosed that over 5,600 specimens were collected from different people who visited coronavirus high-risk countries.

Out of this number, less than 1,400 are under quarantine for 14 days and are still under high health surveillance system.

And Dr. Chilufya has disclosed that Zambia and Malawi, which announced its first three COVID-19 patients yesterday, are working on a bilateral measure aimed at eliminating the spread of the disease across the two countries.

He explained that surveillance has being heightened in all border areas, entry and exist points for the two countries to ensure that trade and commerce is not disrupted for the economy to continue operating.

“We have Presidential directives to ensure that essential services continue through the multi sectorial approach but only make sure that there is proper management of cargo and that people should only travel when it is necessary,” he said.


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