“Declare A National Shutdown” Doctors Recommend

"Declare A National Shutdown" Doctors Recommend
People continue to roam the streets of Harare although the number of people have reduced. Image Credit: Ian Mapira

A group of medical practitioners, which splintered from the Zimbabwe Hospital Doctors Association (ZHDA) is commending the Zimbabwe Government to declare a national shutdown as COVID-19 cases increase in the African country.

Progressive Doctors Association of Zimbabwe (PDAZ) says the national shutdown works as witnessed in China’s COVID-19 epi-centre.

“As PDAZ of Zimbabwe, we strongly recommend the Government of Zimbabwe to consider what we feel is the only way effective to contain COVID 19 which is to declare a National Shutdown sooner rather than later if we are going to contain this. Let’s not wait for the number of cases to become significant as this will be a strain to our resources, to our infrastructure and to our facilities,” the organisation says.

“National shutdown works, we have seen it in China which was the epicentre of COVID 19. To date, they have gone for about 5 days without recording a new case.”

Besides declaring a national shut down PDAZ also says the government needs to ensure all healthcare workers are protected at all levels including nurses doctors, cleaners and admin staff.

“The doctors we represent are willing to provide their services only if the PPE are available at their work stations,” the association says.

“We impress upon our employer to at this time see the importance of all health care workers and the services we provide and to consider incentivising them in these times as this is not an easy time for them as well.”

“As PDAZ we can categorically state through our engagement with the Ministry of Health they have confirmed receipt of a consignment of PPE which are adequate for all health care workers as a donation from Jack Ma, the CEO of Alibaba.”

The government set up a task force to deal with COVID-19, in a country that has a large number of workers in the informal sector according to Information Minister Monica Mutsvangwa responding to the question on the possibility of a national shut down.

Doctors recommend a national shutdown at a time when street of Harare remains crowded despite Zimbabwe recording 1 death from COVID-19.

Fears of the contagious disease have appeared as the deceased roamed in public places risking the lives of Zimbabwean citizens.

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