Mashudu Netsianda, Senior Reporter
THE number of confirmed Covid-19 cases in Zimbabwe has risen to 11 with the latest patient, a 79-year-old Bulawayo man succumbing to the global pandemic, bringing the number of deaths to two.
The latest patient succumbed to the disease on Saturday upon admission at a private hospital in Bulawayo.
The deceased has no reported history of travelling outside the country, but had however, indicated that he had been to a tourist resort in Hwange between March 14 and 16.
In a statement, the Secretary of Health and Child Care Dr Agnes Mahomva said the deceased had been admitted to hospital for clinical management as a case of bacterial pneumonia with an underlying comorbidity.
“The Ministry would like to report that today, the National Microbiology Reference Laboratory (NMRL) tested 21 samples. One of these, tested positive for Covid-19 bringing to eleven the number of confirmed cases reported to date. However, the eleventh case passed away in hospital on Saturday, 4 April 2020,” she said.
Dr Mahomva said the deceased’s condition deteriorated during the evening of the day of admission and he was transferred to the intensive care unit (ICU) for critical care and management in isolation under a specialist physician.
“The local Covid-19 rapid response team was called in and samples were collected and sent to NMRL for Covid-19 testing. While waiting for Covid-19 test results, the patient continued to receive intravenous antibiotics and additionally, he received medical treatment as a clinical case of Covid-19,” she said.
“On Saturday, the 4th of April, his condition continued to deteriorate despite management in ICU until he died.”
Dr Mahomva said contact tracing for the case is in progress and the Ministry of Health and Child Care is continuing to be on high alert to the global pandemic, which has so far claimed more than 80 000 lives with more than 1, 4 million people infected globally.
She urged citizens to practice good personal hygiene to prevent the spread of Covid-19.
Although the virus started in China, the Asian giant has successfully managed to contain but it is causing havoc in Europe and America, where infections and fatalities continue to rise.
Government has imposed a 21-day countrywide lockdown to restrict travelling as part of measures to mitigate spread of the virus countrywide.
Other countries have also imposed lockdowns as the virus thrives in crowded places.