#Malawi’s COVID-19 Update, October 20, 2021: Six new cases, one death – The Maravi Post

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East Saint Louis inferentially LILONGWE-(MaraviPost)-In the past 24 hours, Malawi has registered six new COVID-19 cases, 63 new recoveries and one new death. Of the new cases, four are locally transmitted: all from Blantyre District while two of the new cases are imported: both from Dowa District.

One new death was registered in the past 24 hours and is from Chiradzulu District. The new death was not vaccinated. To the families that have lost their loved ones during this pandemic, may you find peace, hope
and love during this difficult time. May the souls of the departed rest in peace.

Cumulatively, Malawi has recorded 61,738 cases including 2,295 deaths (Case Fatality Rate is at 3.72%). Of these cases, 2,662 are imported infections and 59,076 are locally transmitted.

Cumulatively, 57,029 cases have now recovered (recovery rate of 92.4%) and 232 were lost to follow-up. This brings the total number of active cases to 2,181.

In the past 24 hours, there were no new admissions in the treatment units while two cases were discharged. Currently, a total of six active cases are currently hospitalised (One case is in critical condition and is not vaccinated): two each in Lilongwe and Zomba, and one each in Blantyre and Neno Districts.

On testing, in the past 24 hours, 610 COVID-19 tests were conducted. Of these, 242 tests were through SARS-CoV-2 Antigen Rapid Diagnostic test while the rest were through RT-PCR.

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The positive cases out of the total number tested (past 24 hours) translates to a positivity rate of 1% a weekly positivity rate (seven days moving average) is at 1.1%.

Cumulatively, 420,518 tests have been conducted in the country so far. On COVID-19 vaccination, a total of 1,160,788 vaccine doses has been administered in the country so far.

Cumulatively 636,692 and 269,981 people have received the first dose and second dose of AstraZeneca vaccine respectively while 254,115 people have received Johnson and Johnson vaccine.

Over the past 24 hours, 4,269 and 2,381 people have received first dose and second of AstraZeneca vaccine respectively while 337 people have received Johnson and Johnson vaccine. Cumulatively, 524,096 people are fully vaccinated.

Let me recommend those that are still practicing the COVID-19 preventive and containment measures as it is helping to supress further the transmission in our country.

We need everyone to embrace the new norm of adhering to the measures in order to win this fight. One of the
preventive measures in the COVID-19 fight is the proper wearing of a mask.

Masks are recommended as a simple barrier to help prevent respiratory droplets from traveling into the air and onto other people when the person wearing the mask coughs, sneezes, talks, or raises their voice. This is called source control.

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Apart from reducing the spread of COVID-19, facemasks play an important role in the prevention and control of other infectious respiratory disease transmission such as influenza.

Compliance with other measures including physical distancing, hand hygiene, respiratory etiquette and adequate ventilation in indoor settings is essential for reducing the spread of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19.

In addition, those that are aged 18 years and above should ensure that they receive COVID-19 vaccine to reduce their risk of developing severe disease, risk of hospitalization and deaths when they contract COVID-19.

It is important to note the type of mask to use to effectively protect ourselves and others to the virus. Those that are COVID-19 positive must self-isolate and put on a surgical mask always.

Surgical masks must always be used when taking care of a COVID-19 suspected or positive patient both in health care settings and at home.

Heath care workers and other frontline workers are advised to strictly follow the Infection Prevention and Control measures at all times.

The use of face masks is part of a comprehensive package of the prevention and control measures that can limit the spread of certain respiratory viral diseases, including COVID-19.

Face masks can be used either for protection of healthy persons (worn to protect oneself when in contact with an infected individual) or for source control (worn by an infected individual to prevent onward transmission).

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The following is a guide on how to wear and remove a mask;
 Clean your hands before putting on the mask.
 Inspect the mask for tears or holes, do not use a mask that is damaged.
 Adjust the mask to cover your mouth, nose, and chin, leaving no gaps on the sides.
 Avoid touching the mask while wearing it.
 Change your mask if it gets dirty or wet.
 Clean your hands before taking off the mask.
 Take off the mask by removing it from the ear loops, without touching the front of
the mask.
 Medical masks are for single use only; discard the mask immediately, preferably into a
closed bin. Do not liter
 Wash your hands with soap after removing the mask.
 If you are using a cloth mask, wash it using soap at least once a day.
 Do not share used masks

No one is safe until everyone else is safe. Get Fully Vaccinated! Wear Face Mask! Protect yourself. Protect your loved ones. Protect everyone.

Hon. Khumbize Kandodo Chiponda, MP, MINISTER OF HEALTH

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