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Backlog results create fears

Backlog results create fears

Niël Terblanché

THE announcement that 73 more people have tested positive for COVID-19 in the past 24 hours should be seen against the background of an enormous backlog currently experienced in testing procedures.

 

Dr. Kalumbi Shangula, the Minister of Health and Social Serves, last week announced that the laboratory of the Namibia Institute of Pathology (NIP) is overwhelmed by the large number of tests performed in Walvis Bay during the active case identification exercise.

 

During the latest announcement, the health minister said that 73 new cases were registered in Namibia – one from Windhoek and the rest from Walvis Bay.

 

“One person, a 44-year-old man, tested positive in Windhoek. The man has a history of having travelled to Walvis Bay and is currently in quarantine,” he said.

 

Other than indicating that 37 of the new cases are women and that 36 are men, the youngest is a five-year-old child and the oldest is aged 55.

 

No other information about the day or time of their testing was made available.

 

The active case identification exercise started on 25 June and that targeted people living in densely populated areas of Kuisebmond in Walvis Bay.

 

The total number of tests performed in Namibia since the start of the pandemic in March has just passed the 8 000 mark.

 

To date, the various laboratories performed 11 299 tests and because of the backlog, it is not known how many results are still outstanding.

 

The additional 73 new cases has brought the total number of active cases being isolated and managed by health officials to 460, while the number of active contacts being monitored remained at 1 164.

 

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