By Idah Mhetu
ZIMBABWE has recorded its first confirmed case of coronavirus.
Health minister Obadiah Moyo made the shock announcement on state television Friday.
Moyo said the patient diagnosed with the dreaded disease lives in Victoria Falls and had travelled to the United Kingdom where he presumably got infected.
“The National Microbiology Reference Laboratory at Sally Mugabe Central Hospital has recorded the first case of the novel Coronavirus and confirmed that the suspect of Covid-19 had tested positive,” said the minister.
“This is the first case of Covid-19 in Zimbabwe.
“The patient is a 39-year-old Caucasian male who is a resident of Victoria Falls who had travelled to Manchester, United Kingdom on March 7 and returned on March 15 via South Africa.”
Moyo said the patient is still being assisted at home and was recovering.
“After arrival, he put himself on self-quarantine at home as per our advice to travellers coming from covid-19 affected countries.
“Upon noticing the symptoms, he contacted his medical practitioner advising him that he had the symptoms. The general practitioner alerted the local Covid-19 rapid response team who immediately went to assess him and specimens were collected,” he added.
Moyo urged Zimbabweans to remain calm as the ministry has embarked on contact tracing.
“We managed to identify this case in a timely fashion and ensure that he was appropriately managed and teams are now engaged in contact tracing and are being assisted by the patient himself.
“We call for the nation to be calm as we deal with this first case of Covid-19 in Zimbabwe.
“In the mean-time let us continue with good persona hygiene,” said the minister.