The Minister of Health, Jane Ruth Aceng, has ordered three companies closed after their staff tested positive for COVID-19 pandemic.
“We have registered emerging clusters of transmission in three business premises in the last one week where in all, 11 cases and 316 contacts have been identified.”
These business premises have been recommended for temporary closure.
The businesses are: a. Eagle Holdings (4 cases confirmed): linked to the 5th death (46-year-old /Female; Indian) b. Megha Industries (4 cases confirmed) and c. Toyota Uganda (3 cases confirmed).
“We are in phase 3 of the pandemic, where we are seeing clusters of community transmission and now deaths specifically in Kampala,” she told press on Thursday.
To date, 59 districts in Uganda have registered confirmed cases of COVID-19, these include: Adjumani, Amolatar, Amudat, Amuru, Arua, Bugiri, Buikwe, Bukwo, Buliisa, Bushenyi, Busia, Buvuma, Dokolo, Gomba, Gulu, Hoima, Iganga, Isingiro, Kabale, Kagadi, KakumiroKalangala, Kampala, Kasese, Kayunga, Kiryandongo, Kisoro, Kitgum, Koboko, Kumi, Kyankwanzi, Kyotera, Lamwo, Lira, Luwero, Lwengo, Madi Okollo, Masaka, Masindi, Mayuge, Mbale, Mbarara, Moyo, Mpigi, Nakaseke, Nakasongola, Namisindwa, Nebbi, Ntungamo, Nwoya, Obongi, Oyam, Rakai, Sironko, Soroti, Tororo, Wakiso, Yumbe and Zombo.
As of Thursday, Uganda has registered a total of eleven (11) COVID-19 related mortalities.
Out of the eleven; 8 are from Kampala Metropolitan Area, 1 from Hoima, 1 from Wakiso and 1 from Namisindwa districts.
From the trend of the deaths we are witnessing, three (3) were recorded from 21st July 2020 to 29thJuly 2020 while from 31st July to 12th August, the mortalities more than doubled to 8.
An average of 4 deaths a week, Aceng said.
“Additionally, we have noted that the disease kills everyone irrespective of their age. The youngest COVID-19 related mortality was 27 years old while the oldest was 80 years old.”
90% of the mortalities presented at private health facilities and had a history of underlying conditions such as: diabetes, hypertension, HIV, asthma among others.
A total of 645 contacts to the eleven (11) deaths have been listed, 9 secondary cases and 2 tertiary cases turned positive.
Over the past three weeks, the Ministry, and the country have seen an emergence of cases largely from previously unknown transmission lines in Kampala and parts of Wakiso districts.
Since the 1st COVID-19 case was reported in Kampala on 23rd March, 2020, a cumulative total of 160 confirmed cases have been registered.
Of the cases registered in Kampala, 56 are imported (55 returnees, 1 truck driver) while 104 are locally transmitted (Contacts: 35; Alerts: 49, Health workers: 20).
In relation to the cases in Kampala, 79 cases have been reported in the last 14 days.
23 community cases were registered in one week, from 28 July to 3 August. However, in the following week, 4th to 12th August 2020, the confirmed cases more than doubled to 56.
It is important to note that of all the 11 deaths so far reported nationally, eight (8) are from the Kampala region alone. More so, all were identified from unknown transmission lines.
It is possible that with the phased lifting of the lockdown, the virus may have been imported into Kampala and it appears to have spread among the communities in Kampala.
Following the current trend of COVID-19 in Kampala Metropolitan Area, the Ministry of Health working closely with Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) and partners will intensify response activities to a level to commensurate with the threat at hand.
The following is being done;
Increased Human Resources at the Emergency Operations Center at KCCA, intensified efforts to reach out to the private facilities and increase their level of alertness, intensify risk communication for the population in Kampala city and targeted messages for population subgroups, Enhanced disease surveillance and Rapid Assessment Survey to determine the extent of spread of the virus among the communities.
To address the chain of transmission, a Regional Task Force has been established in the Mbale region with support from the Security Forces to coordinate the response efforts in the affected districts of Mbale, Namisindwa, Manafwa, Bududa, Sironko and Tororo.
It is envisaged that a regional effort will yield a more comprehensive approach to surveillance and coordination and build capacity in the region for immediate and sustained prevention and control of COVID-19.