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Health Minister justifies use of public buses to transport COVID-19 samples

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Health Minister Dr Chitalu Chilufya has justified the transporting of COVID-19 samples by medical personnel using public transport such as buses.

This follows the death of Ian Mutambo, a Laboratory Technician at Zambezi District Hospital in North Western Province who died in a Power Tools bus accident in Manyinga District yesterday while transporting suspected samples of COVID-19 to TDRC in Ndola.  

Speaking during the COVID-19 update yesterday, Dr Chilufya said there is nothing uncommon about medical samples being transported on public transport, but has regretted that a life was lost in this particular case.

He said there is no threat in transporting medical samples using public transport as they are securely packaged but indicated that a detailed report of the incident will be given once the commission that looks into death while on duty finalizes its investigations.

Meanwhile, Dr Chilufya has disclosed that the cumulative number of COVID-19 cases in Zambia has increased to 124 after the country recorded five more cases of the pandemic.

Dr Chilufya said the new cases involve 1 truck driver from a foreign jurisdiction, 3 from Lusaka and 1 from Kafue. He said the number of recoveries has risen to 78, with 3 deaths and 46 active cases.

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