Fourth wave here, ‘but don’t panic’

The health minister said there is no need for Namibians to panic, as long as they adhere to health regulations and get vaccinated.

06 December 2021 | Health

JEMIMA BEUKES







WINDHOEK

Health minister Dr Kalumbi Shangula has called for calm as Namibia enters the fourth Covid-19 wave, which saw numbers quadrupling in less than a week. At present, it looks nothing like when the deadly Delta variant gripped the nation, he said.

Namibia has yet to announce whether any Omicron cases have been recorded in the country, following the emergence of the variant in neighboring Botswana and South Africa as well as in Europe a week ago.

President Hage Geingob is expected to announce new measures this morning, following the sharp rise in numbers in the last few days.

Kalumbi said yesterday there is absolutely no need for Namibians to panic if they adhere to regulations and health and safety precautions, including taking a Covid-19 vaccination.

“So far, we do not see the pressure yet on hospitalisation. We have a big number [of people] who are getting tested but the number of people who are admitted, throughout the country, are only 21. We do have a lot of people who tested positive but so far they are not exhibiting conditions which warrant for hospital admission,” he said.

The minister added that when the Delta variant broke out early this year, the picture looked completely different and people were hospitalised very early on.

“Namibians must not panic or be alarmed but they must take precautionary measures, get vaccinated. We do not want people to go and spend Christmas in hospital. We also want to give our doctors, nurses and other healthcare workers time to rest,” he said.

Booster available

Since the case spike early last week, the Khomas Region reported the highest number of cases, with most of these being learners, students and healthcare workers.

Following this, the health ministry has urged healthcare workers to treat all flu-like and respiratory illness as potential Covid-19 cases.

It also announced booster shots for Sinopharm recipients who received their last shot six months ago.

[email protected]

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