Sunday, July 25, 2021

Francistown fights Covid-19 with scant resources

As Covid-19 infections surge countrywide, the Greater Francistown District Health Management Team (DHMT) has lamented shortage of resources in efforts to fight the scourge. 

Responding to The Telegraph, Dr Gotsileene Monamodi the Public Health Specialist at Greater Francistown DHMT said challenges include, among others, shortage of nurses and doctors.

“This has been exacerbated by the fact that we are having our health care workers getting infected with Covid-19 worsening the situation even further,” he said.

He also said the effects of the pandemic are widespread and have forced them to stretch ambulances. 

As of the 11th March 2020 the Greater Francistown recorded 87 new cases and cumulatively there are 4021 confirmed cases of Covid 19. There are 756 active cases, 3200 recovered cases and 41 deaths.

The DHMT has two major isolation centres in Matsiloje Isolation Centre and Ntshe Clinic in Francistown. As of 12th March 2021, theere were 262 people at Matsiloje and 20 at Ntshe Clinic. 

Dr Monamodi said Covid-19 cases continue to rise with 80 cases recorded daily. He revealed that the highest number of cases were recorded on 16th of February 2021 at 165. He also expressed concern over public violations of the Covid-19 protocols.

“Covid-19 cases continue to rise in our area due to a combination of factors considered to be drivers of the rise in infection rates. The factors include non-adherence by the community to Covid-19 protocolS and high population mobility,” he emphasised.

In a bid to sensitize members of the public on the Covid-19 pandemic he said they have flighted posters in public spaces. Contact tracing and case management teams have been empowered to relay vital messages to communities. 

He said they hold morning briefs on Covid-19 to their clients. Asked on what preparations they have in place to control the pandemic during the upcoming Easter holidays he said they are continuing to message members of the public to adhere to Covid 19 protocols.

“We continue to educate them on the correct use of masks, social distancing and hand washing. We are working to engage with other sectors to project our messages so that we could reach more people in the district,” he said.

Asked if the intermittent ban of alcohol reduced the Covid-19 spread in the District, Dr Monamodi said they are still to analyze if such evidence exists. 

He appealed to residents to adhere to protocols – hand washing, wearing masks and social distancing. He said they have plans for the Covid-19 vaccine roll out in the district. Dr Monamodi added that currently healthcare workers are undergoing training on vaccine roll out. 

“We are have started a community campaign to educate people about the vaccine roll out,” he said.

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