LESS than 24 hours after the Namibian education minister announced that schools in the country will re-open on 20 April, a teacher was reported to be one of two recent cases to test positive for COVID-19.
The two latest positive cases recorded in Namibia are a teacher and a medical practitioner who had recent contact with South African nationals.
Both tested positive for infection with the coronavirus in Windhoek, bringing the total number of cases recorded in the country so far to 16.
The Minister of Health and Social Services, Dr Kalumbi Shangula, during the daily briefing of at the National COVID-19 Information Centre confirmed the two latest cases.
Case number 15, the teacher, is a 31-year-old man who had close contact with a friend from South Africa from 26 March onwards. The patient informed health officials that the person he had contact with has since returned to South Africa.
“The man reported to the Robert Mugabe Clinic on 30 March with complaints of coughing, body pain, a sore throat and shortness of breath. He was tested and the results came out positive on 4 April 2020,” Dr. Shangula said.
According to the health minister, the teacher has been placed in supervised isolation where he is currently in a satisfactory condition.
“Case number 16 is a 46-year-old medical practitioner who recently travelled to South Africa. He also presented himself at the Robert Mugabe Clinic on 30 March with complaints of fever, chills, body pains and a sore throat. The positive results of the tests taken then were made available on 4 April,” Dr Shangula said.
According to the health minister, the doctor was also placed in supervised isolation and that he is currently in a satisfactory condition.
Dr Shangula said that to date, the number of suspected COVID-19 samples taken in Namibia and submitted to South Africa for confirmatory testing stands at 362.
Of these, 206 were submitted to the Namibia Institute of Pathology and 156 were submitted to PathCare, which in turn sends the samples to South Africa for confirmatory testing.
“Globally, health care workers are at increased risk of contracting infectious diseases. Employers must ensure that these people are well protected and taken care of by providing adequate and appropriate Personal Protective Equipment while ensuring that people are well trained on the correct use of such equipment,” he said.
Namibia has not had any COVID-19 deaths and now has 13 active cases following 3 recoveries.