KAMPALA – Uganda has recorded one new COVID-19 death bringing the total COVID-19 deaths to 56.
The Ministry of Health has also confirmed 179 new COVID cases from samples tested on 13th September 2020.
The cumulative confirmed COVID cases in Uganda are now 4,978.
This has raised concern that the country is losing the war against the pandemic especially at a time when it prepares to reopen places of worship and schools.
While originally the highest number of cases was being recorded in Kampala, other districts such as Luweero, Gulu, Pader, Jinja and Manafwa are also recording more cases.
Scientists advising the government on Covid-19 have attributed the sharp rise in cases of Covid-19 community infections and increasing deaths to ineffective communication strategy, distrust, the challenge in balancing safety with livelihood and hardship in tracing contacts.
Dr Misaki Wayengera, the chair of Ministerial Scientific Advisory Committee (MSAC) on Covid-19, saying the country is failing in the entire response.
Dr Misaki said it is absurd that Kampala city dwellers have perceived Covid-19 to be a mere flu and believe they are free from the risk of contracting and or dying of the disease.
“[Most] Ugandans still consider themselves invisible to this “flu-like illness”, as historically flue has never been a serious disease of the mostly youthful and versatile age-group, except for a few infants and old people,” he says.
Dr Richard Walyomo, the Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) head of the Covid-19 surveillance team, says the growing habit of avoiding contact tracers is leading to more infections and increased risk of Covid-19 deaths in communities.
Health minister Dr Jane Ruth warns that the violations of the measures will lead to more infections and that more deaths will be recorded as health facilities get overwhelmed and health workers exhausted.
“Usually in public health response we prioritise public understanding, but if that fails, we will be left with no option but to apply some force,” she said.