UNHCR Intensifies COVID-19 Preparedness Amid Poor Hygiene at Dzaleka

UNHCR's Senior Protection Officer, Henok Ochchalla says Dzaleka refugee camp in Dowa is highly congested with over 40,000 refugees staying in the camp and that hygienic conditions leave a lot to be desired hence a hot-spot for coronavirus outbreak.

In view of this, Ochchalla told Zodiak online Wednesday that UNHCR in conjunction with Ministry of Health has trained Medical personel in Dowa on COVID-19 preventive and preparedness response at Dzaleka refugee camp and the district at large.

He said, COVID-19 is spreading fast and that there was need for speedy preparedness efforts to ensure no Coronavirus outbreak is spread in the district.

"We find it prudent to prepare Health personel in Dowa for coronavirus outbreak because Dzaleka refugee camp is highly congested whose population is now over 40,000 and has poor hygiene" Ochchalla said.

Dowa District Commissioner, Alex Mdooko has hailed the move saying it will go a long way in building capacity of health officers in the district to handle coronavirus outbreak.

"The training has come at the right time because we are hosting refugees at Dzaleka refugee camp and that through the training, our health officers will have their capacity built to handle the deadly virus should it spread in the district " he said.

Mdooko further told Zodiak Online that Dzaleka refugee camp receives illegal immigrants who use illegal entry points into Dzaleka refugee camp posing a threat of Coronavirus outbreak in the country.

"Some refugees who come to Dzaleka camp use illegal entry points and this puts the country at high risk of Coronavirus outbreak"

Mdooko also quashed Social media myths that COVID-19 only attacks old people saying "everyone can get infected with the disease and that the disease is not only cured through prayer as I have heard some people saying."

Meanwhile, Covid-19 treatment and quarantine rooms have been mounted at Dzaleka refugee Camp in Dowa District in readiness for any possible outbreak of the virus.

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Last modified on Wednesday, 25/03/2020

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