Nurses have expressed concern over the temporary relocation of thousands of Zimbabweans to rural areas after the government declared a total national lockdown commencing this Monday.
Zimbabwe Nurses Association president Enock Dongo postulated that people who are already infected with the virus but unaware of their status could potentially infect a whole village and cause a health disaster in the countryside. He said:
It is unfortunate that people decided to migrate to rural areas. It will be a disaster countrywide. We have been urging the government to equip all hospitals with the protective measure for coronavirus, but it did not listen.
People in rural areas do not have information on how to protect themselves from infected persons. You cannot greet your old parents with an elbow, they do not understand that.
… now if you go to rural areas with it, but not knowing your status, you can infect the whole village and it will be a big disaster since the government does not have capacity at the moment.
This comes after bus termini in the country’s major cities were on Sunday flooded by thousands of people travelling to rural areas fearful that they could starve to death during the three-week-long lockdown.
Meanwhile, Zimbabwe’s dilapidated health infrastructure cannot cope with a huge pandemic especially of the magnitude posed by the novel coronavirus.