Malawi Covid-19 patient spotted in bar after escaping from isolation facility
Rustenburg – A 27-year-old Covid-19 patient who escaped from his isolation room at Karonga District Hospital in Malawi was spotted in a bar in Chintheche, local media reported on Wednesday.
According to a report in the Nation, the man escaped on Saturday after beating the hospital's security systems.
Health workers told the newspaper that his escape was worrisome because the patient was likely to have used public transport when he travelled to Mpata, then from Karonga through Mzuzu City to Nkhata Bay.
Karonga District director of health and social services David Sibale expressed regret at the security lapse, but stated that even while at the hospital, the man was getting calls from people in Mpata, some of whom allegedly threatened his life.
"After escaping on Saturday, he went to Chilambiro, but when we followed up twice, and even on the second occasion when we went with police, the community was uncooperative.
"They lied to us that he had gone back to Tanzania. But now we have information that he is in Nkhata Bay, which is his home of origin," he told the newspaper.
Sibale said they were puzzled by the man's escape from the isolation facility because there was no sign of broken doors or windows.
The man was reportedly spotted at a bar in Chintheche on Monday and was taken to his home village.
Health Minister Jappie Mhango said they were investigating how the man escaped.
Malawi has recorded 63 Covid-19 infection cases, with three deaths and 24 recoveries.
Meanwhile, online publication Maravi Post reported that nurses in Malawi have threatened to go on strike over tax-free risk allowances.
National Organisation of Nurses and Midwives president Shouts Simeza has expressed disappointment in the government for reportedly deducting 30% tax from the risk allowances.
The risk allowance for nurses was adjusted from a minimum of 1 000 kwacha (R25) to a maximum of 60 000 kwacha following nationwide protests.
African News Agency (ANA)