Some patients infected with Covid-19 and admitted to isolation facilities have reportedly been running away from them, particularly in Eastern province.

Director for Infectious Diseases Hospital Professor Lloyd Mulenga said that most patients flee the health facilities and later return with severe symptoms thereafter succumbing to the virus.

“When we look at the past week, majority of the mortalities we have been having have been from Eastern province and North-Western province…we have patients admitted, then they run away and when they come back, they come back with severe symptoms and we lose them.”

In an exclusive interview with S24 today, Minister of Health Dr. Jonas Chanda said he is not aware of the matter, and that this displeased him.

Dr. Chanda said: “Professor Mulenga will do well to inform me. In Chipata, I wouldn’t know which category those patients would be in; whether they have moderate symptoms, because I can’t imagine someone who is severely ill on oxygen cylinder on their back running away.”

Prof. Mulenga said most of the patients that have died in Lusaka in the last few weeks are due to other comorbities other than the covid-19 virus and have been come from large isolation centers.

“Remember, even when someone has covid doesn’t mean that they have no rights. We cannot cage someone to a bed for them not to leave a health facility. There are certain instances when someone has been counseled, they are not well, and they insist that they can isolate at home, against medical advice,” he said.

He said this has been rare in Lusaka province especially, but the worrying occurrence has been observed in Eastern province. 

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