Zim in coronavirus scare

BY VANESSA GONYE

ZIMBABWE yesterday reported its first suspected case of the coronavirus, with authorities saying investigations were underway.

Wilkins Infectious Diseases Hospital is handling and investigating the case.

City of Harare health department director Prosper Chonzi confirmed that a 27-year-old Zimbabwean was in isolation at Wilkins Hospital for further investigations.

“We are investigating a case of a 27-year-old Zimbabwean woman who came back from China. She is said to have been treated of the virus while in China, but we took her into isolation upon arrival at Robert Gabriel Mugabe International Airport on Monday to protect the community,” he said.

Chonzi said responsible authorities were handling her case, with tests having been done yesterday.

“We have done the necessary tests and are waiting for the results, which we will have in the next coming hours,” he said.

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Chonzi said they had moved all the patients admitted at Wilkins Hospital to Beatrice Road Infectious Diseases Hospital.

Director for epidemiology and disease control in the Health ministry, Portia Manangazira, confirmed the patient’s confinement.

“We are still taking that as a suspected case, yet to confirm if she still has the virus. We are awaiting lab results for now,” she said.

Manangazira said the patient travelled from Wuhan province in January, but has not yet shown any respiratory related signs. “We sent samples for tests and expecting results in the next few days,” she said.

Health minister Obadiah Moyo said he would make a presentation of the issue in Parliament today.

As of Tuesday, the virus had claimed 1 873 lives in China, with 73 332 cases confirmed globally.

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