DAILY MONITOR 19 APR 2020
he minister of Health, Dr Jane Ruth Aceng, on Saturday urged Ugandan women to keep away from long-distance cargo truck drivers after three of them tested positive for coronavirus.
She said a total of 2,878 samples from truck drivers had been screened and tested. Of these, one Ugandan truck driver tested positive, while the other two were from Kenya and Tanzania respectively.
“I appeal to all of you who live along the roads followed by the truck drivers including the women who interact with them for different purposes to stay away from these truck drivers. During this period of Lock down, please do not accept visitors into your homes, not even neighbours, ensure adequate physical distancing with people who do not live with you every day,” she said on Saturday while giving the second comprehensive update on COVID-19 response.
Explaining why the truck drivers are not detained until the results are out, the Minister said: “We do not hold cargo drivers until their results are released because they are transporting essential materials for the daily livelihoods of people in the country.
Holding them at the border will lead crowding bringing about more infections.”
Ms Aceng further said a cumulative total of 1,396 contacts to the confirmed cases had been registered since the declaration of the first confirmed case, 1,078 had completed their 14 days of follow up, screening and or testing.
“About 317 contacts are still under follow up. So far, 1,246 (89 percent) of contacts have been tested after 10 days of daily follow up,” she said.
According to the minister, lifting the lockdown at this time would be too soon due to existing potential sources of infection that are not fully identified and a rising number of cases in neighbouring countries.
Prof Rhoda Wanyenze, a physician, public health consultant, academic and a medical administrator, also said the lockdown is meant to manage mortality by minimising infections.
“We do not want the situation to go out of hand. Lifting the lockdown will need more protocols to make sure that “rebounds” do not become a problem in the future,” she said.
Uganda has so far reported a cumulative number of 55 confirmed cases. Of these, 22 have recovered while 33 are active cases.