Minister of Health Khumbize Chiponda has warned communities to guard against a possible Covid-19 second wave by sticking to basic preventive measures.
Speaking in Lilongwe yesterday when Village Reach, with support from the Covid-19 Action Fund for Africa, donated Covid-19 personal protective equipment (PPE) for community health workers in Malawi, the minister said the reduced Covid-19 cases should not lead to a relaxation of the measures.
She said: “In Europe, Covid-19 is raging again, they are having a second wave of attack. We opened our airports and we are having visitors from other countries; hence, we should be careful in adhering to basic preventive measures.”
Chiponda acknowledged that community health workers often lack resources; hence, commended Village Reach for the targeted PPE donation.
The donation, to be distributed in health centres and community clinics nationwide, includes two million surgical face masks, one million gloves and 40 000 face shields.
Village Reach country director Alinafe Kasiya said community health workers are critical as they work closely with people in hard-to-reach areas.
He said: “Community health workers are frontline workers who provide immunisations, child days and other under-five health care services, so they need to be supported to ensure seamless service provision.”
A community health worker Agnes Banda in an interview said the donation would help reduce the stigma they were facing in communities where people feared contracting Covid-19 from the health workers.
The Covid-19 Action Fund for Africa assisted in mobilising PPE for Malawi anchored by a $10 million (about K7. 4 billion) commitment from Direct Relief, additional support from Crown Family Philanthropies as well as in-kind contributions from over 30 collaborating partners.
The Covid-19 Ac t i o n Fund for Africa is the largest mobilisation of private resources to protect Africa’s frontline health workers from Covid-19 and is delivering nearly 60 million pieces of PPE to countries across the sub-Saharan Africa.