COVID-19 situation update as of 13th January 2022 in Malawi

BY SPECIAL REPORTER

IN the past 24 hours, Malawi has registered 476 new COVID-19 cases, 431 new recoveries and eight new deaths.
According to Minister of Health and Co-Chairperson-Presidential Task force, Hon. Khumbize Kandodo Chiponda (MP), all new cases are locally transmitted: 88 from Lilongwe, 84 from Blantyre, 78 from Ntchisi, 37 from Mzimba North, 35 from Zomba, 29 from Kasungu, 24 from Mchinji, 15 from Mangochi, 11 each from Dowa and Nkhotakota, 10 from Chitipa, nine each from Mzimba South, Chiradzulu, and Phalombe, five from Salima, four from Machinga,

"Three each from Balaka, Ntcheu, Thyolo, and Nsanje, two each from Mulanje and Nkhata Bay, and one each from Dedza and Karonga districts. The eight deaths are; two each from Blantyre, Lilongwe, and Kasungu, and one each from Mzimba North and Chiradzulu, all were not vaccinated.

"Cumulatively, Malawi has recorded 81,890 cases including 2,445 deaths (Case Fatality Rate is at 2.99%). Of these cases, 2,822 are imported infections and 79,068 are locally transmitted. Cumulatively, 64,147 cases have now recovered (recovery rate of 78.33%) and 232 were lost to follow-up. 

"This brings the total number of active cases to 15,066. In the past 24 hours, there were 46 new admissions, 35 new discharges and one case absconded from the treatment units. Currently, 204 active cases are currently hospitalised; 76 in Blantyre, 38 in Lilongwe, 13 in Mzimba North, seven each in Karonga, Nkhotakota, and Ntchisi, six from Kasungu, five each in Mzimba South and Machinga, three each in Salima, Mulanje, Balaka, Ntcheu, Thyolo, and Chiradzulu, two each in Mangochi, Mchinji, Nkhata Bay, Chikwawa, and Chitipa, and one each in Dedza, Neno, Phalombe, and Nsanje districts. 34 of the new admissions are not vaccinated, nine are fully vaccinated, and three received one dose of AstraZeneca vaccine,"He said.
"On testing, in the past 24 hours, 1,958 COVID-19 tests were conducted. Of these, 1,273 tests were through SARS-CoV-2 Antigen Rapid Diagnostic test while the rest were through RT-PCR test. 

"The positive cases out of the total number tested (past 24 hours) translates to a positivity rate of 24.31% and the weekly positivity rate (seven days moving average) is at 25.7%. Cumulatively, 510,832 tests have been conducted in the country so far. On COVID-19 vaccination, a total of 1,855,128 vaccine doses have been administered in the country so far. 

"Cumulatively 1,098,898 and 399,078 people have received the first dose and second dose of AstraZeneca vaccine respectively, 356,106 have received Johnson and Johnson, and 1,042 have received first dose of Pfizer vaccine. Over the past 24 hours, 3,137 people have received 

Johnson and Johnson, while 80 have received the first dose of Pfizer vaccine. Cumulatively, 755,184 people are fully vaccinated.

"As Ministry of Health, we are aware that some sections of the society are not willing to receive the vaccine due to different unfounded beliefs, myths and misconceptions. One of them concerns pregnant and breastfeeding women. 

"Let me highlight that pregnant women and those who are breastfeeding can get vaccinated as COVID-19 vaccines are not contraindicated for them. The benefits of pregnant women getting the vaccine and being protected from severe COVID-19 disease which can lead to death amongst pregnant women far outweighs the perceived risk associated with the vaccine. It is recommended that pregnant women should receive COVID-19 vaccine after attaining 14 weeks of pregnancy. 

The vaccines will prevent pregnant women from developing serious illness, deaths and adverse pregnancy outcomes from COVID-19. Breastfeeding mothers can also get the vaccine and continue to breastfeed their children safely. On COVID-19 vaccine and fertility, let me inform the public that COVID-19 vaccines do not interfere with a person’s hormones hence the vaccine does not affect fertility of a person or child bearing.

Let me also emphasize that the COVID-19 vaccines are safe and effective and monitoring of adverse Effects following immunization is part and parcel of the immunization program in the country. Let me appeal to those who have received or intend to receive any COVID-19 vaccines to report side effects, if any, to their attending health care workers at a nearby health facility. 

"Furthermore, the public is encouraged to get vaccinated as soon as possible and not wait for a specific type as all currently authorized and recommended COVID-19 vaccines are safe and effective. The best time to get vaccinated is now as evidence shows that the COVID-19 vaccines are working as the majority that are developing severe disease, being admitted in treatment units and those that are dying from COVID-19 are NOT VACCINATED. 

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

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