‘It’s an ordinary flu, dont panic ’ 

Source: ‘It’s an ordinary flu, dont panic ’ -Newsday Zimbabwe

GOVERNMENT yesterday dismissed fears that Zimbabwe is being ravaged by the COVID-19 virus, saying the country has not recorded a single case in the last four weeks, with the bug currently circulating being an influenza virus.

GOVERNMENT yesterday dismissed fears that Zimbabwe is being ravaged by the COVID-19 virus, saying the country has not recorded a single case in the last four weeks, with the bug currently circulating being an influenza virus.

However, speaking during the post-Cabinet media briefing yesterday, Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services minister Jenfan Muswere said people should shun crowds so as to avoid being infected by the virus.

“The recently increased influenza flu experienced in the last few weeks is due to a seasonal increase, which is usually experienced in the country and the region as we approach the winter season. This is not a COVID-19 outbreak,” he said.

Muswere said there were more influenza cases in the same period last year compared to this year.

“149 000 cases compared to 99 000 cases in 2024. Zimbabwe has not recorded a single COVID-19 case in the last four weeks. People are, however, encouraged to wash their hands, to avoid crowds, to cover the mouth and nose when coughing and sneezing and also to stay at home when there are symptoms of the disease,” he said.

Addressing the journalists during the question and answer session in the National Assembly, Health and Child Care minister Douglas Mombeshora said government did not have statistics of the people who succumbed to the influenza virus.

“I do not have statistics to say who has succumbed to the virus so far. But actually, every year we have a few people who succumb to the virus. Mostly those who succumb to the virus are children below the age of five because their immune system has not yet matured,” he said.

“Those are at risk. And adults who may have underlying conditions, other medical conditions, which weaken their immune system also can be tipped over by the virus. And then we have elders above 65, because as you get older, also your immune system becomes weak.

“Your ability to fight any other diseases becomes weak. They are also a high risk group. And usually pregnant women in the post-pregnant period after two weeks, they are also at risk.”

Mombeshora also dismissed social media reports suggesting that some people had succumbed to the influenza virus.

“But there are not many. I know in the social media there have been exaggerations because I’ve jumped around following those reports to say so and so has succumbed to this disease. We will try to make a follow-up to find out.

“It’s not true. So there are cases out there. So we will find out later on how many people have succumbed to the virus,” he said.

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