On Tuesday morning, the World Health Organisation (WHO) representative to Uganda Yonas Tegegn Wolderman appealed to Ugandans not to travel to the villages for the Christmas and New Year festivities owing to the spike in COVID-19 cases in urban areas around the country.
Kampala still had the highest number with 324 cases, Wakiso (75), Tororo (21), Kalungu (12), Lyantonde (9), Masaka (9),Buikwe (8), Kabarole (8), Jinja (8), Mbale (6), Bushenyi (6), Busia (8), Kiboga (6), Mukono (5), Mpigi (5), Ntungamo (5), Kasese (5), Mityana (5), Mbarara (4), Ibanda (4), Rubanda (3), Kalaki (3), Sheema (2), Butambala (2), Buvuma (2), Mubende (2), Gulu (1), Amuru(1), Luwero(1), Soroti(1), Kamuli(1), Nakaseke(1), Moyo(1), Koboko(1), Kamwenge(1) and 1 truck driver at Malaba.
“If you really love your parents, don’t visit them this season. If you really love your friends, don’t invite them to a party to celebrate New Year’s. Do your part. Stay safe,” Wolderman warned.
Wolderman was in the company of Ministry of Health officials who addressed the press at the Government Media Center.
Last week the Government warned that the majority of the elderly people in the villages are already vulnerable. The public was urged to celebrate with them by calling and using the available Mobile Money options instead of risking yours and their health.
But despite the warning, hundreds of people remained stranded at different taxi and bus parks as they scrambled to travel to the village. Several bus companies had almost tripled their prices to different parts of the country.
Henry Mwebesa, the Director-General of Health noted that 10-15% of COVID-19 patients are in severe/critical condition and are admitted at the national referral, regional referral hospitals and some private facilities.
“They get additional treatment like oxygen and other support. 3-5% of patients require Intensive Care Unit,” Mwebesa noted.
He also stated that 80% of the patients are asymptomatic. “For our home care, we have been recommending Vitamin C, Zinc, azithromycin and urge them to eat fruits, drink a lot and exercise regularly. We encourage the asymptomatic to stay at home even if you’re strong and energetic,” Mwebesa added.
Dr Joyce Moriku Kaducu, the State Minister for Primary Health Care noted that while the Ministry has lifted restrictions on lockdown, “it is important to note that bars, nightclubs and concerts which are focal areas of COVID-19 spread based on global evidence and COVID-19 transmission dynamics remained closed.”
She called upon all health workers to adhere to infection, prevention and control measures both in the health facility and when they go home.
“This will greatly reduce the rise in infections that we are currently experiencing among health workers. To date, we have registered 1,689 confirmed cases amongest health workers and 15 have succumbed to the disease. May their souls rest in eternal peace,” the minister said.