The Government says it will tighten measures to curb the spread of the coronavirus, especially at the country’s borders.
This follows a rise in new COVID-19 cases being recorded in neighbouring South Africa and the detection of new Omicron sub-variants in Botswana.
Botswana recently detected new Omicron BA.4 and BA.5 variants, which are dominating the 6 000 new cases per day being recorded in South Africa.
The Deputy Minister for Health and Childcare, John Mangwiro said, the country will adopt new measures to prevent the spread of the virus. He said:
The regulations that will be enforced to contain the pandemic this time are different from those we have been using in the past.
Government will strengthen its strategies to stop the spread of the pandemic.
Data shows that the country was recording an average of 63 new cases per day, compared to 40 in the previous week.
On Wednesday, Cabinet was informed that the COVID-19 hospital bed occupancy rate increased from 1% last week to 1.6% though there were no intensive care unit admissions countrywide.
Medical and Dental Private Practitioners of Zimbabwe Association (MDPPZ) president Johannes Marisa said Zimbabwe could slide into the fifth wave of coronavirus infections. Said Marisa:
It is highly likely that we are going to face a similar predicament as our neighbour South Africa.
There is a high probability that we will be in trouble with the fifth wave shortly.
If we are to increase the testing capacity, we are going to see a sharp rise in the number of patients who test positive for COVID-19.
Progressive Teachers Union of Zimbabwe (PTUZ) secretary-general Raymond Majongwe told NewsDay that there is general complacency in schools which may result in a spike in new infections. Said Mjongwe:
We are receiving reports that pupils are no longer wearing masks, while others no longer have sanitising facilities on their premises.
It will be catastrophic if the government does not put in place measures to contain the spread of the disease.