Malawi running out of space, UK extends travel ban

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Lilongwe – Malawi’s Presidential Taskforce on COVID-19 says nearly 50 percent of its hospital bed capacity has been exhausted by patients infected with the new coronavirus.

Taskforce chair Dr John Phuka this week said the COVID-19 had put pressure on an already strained public health sector.

Despite this, Health Minister Khumbize Kandodo Chiponda urged the public to remain calm and play its part in combating the pandemic by observing social distancing and personal hygiene recommendations.

She also called on people to visit health centres for testing as the equipment was available and should be put to maximum use in the effort to contain the pandemic.

Meanwhile, the United Kingdom has extended its ban on travellers from the Southern Africa region to include the Indian Ocean islands of Seychelles and Mauritius. This is in response to growing infections and deaths in the UK, and the emergence of a new strain of the virus in South Africa.

The UK has discovered its own new strain in its borders and is apprehensive of importing yet another one.

Entry into Britain is now restricted for travellers from Malawi, Mauritius, Namibia, Seychelles, South Africa and Zimbabwe.

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