Afghanistan Now Fights New Enemy, As Black Fungus Infections On The Rise

Kabul: Acting Public Health Minister Vahid Majroh announced the identification of black fungus infection, among COVID-19 patients.

Majroh stated that the new disease is on the rise, which will take further lives, if citizens become more irresponsible.

Majroh added that COVID-19 cannot be stopped through oxygen, even if each home receives an oxygen machine, but it can be prevented by wearing facemasks, avoiding crowds particularly in closed spaces, repeatedly washing hands during the day, avoiding those who have COVID symptoms, and receiving COVID vaccine.

Majroh gave assurances to the public that the government is utilizing all accessible capacities to purchase and provide COVID vaccine, as Afghanistan like other 3rd world countries is facing serious challenges. Majroh added that the Ministry of Public Health (MoPH) will receive 1.5 million doses of Johnson and Johnson from the US next week, and about 500,000 AstraZeneca doses from COVAX facility in mid-July, and hoped that the MoPH and National Procurement Authority will soon be able to purchase additional vaccine doses.

This comes even as the MoPH has recorded 1,272 new COVID-19 cases and 92 deaths over the past 24 hours. The total cases now stand at 124,757, while death toll is 5,199.

Majroh also held a meeting with health officials from the capital and other provinces to discuss measures to prevent the spread of black fungus. Participants discussed the virus effects, symptoms, mode of transmission, treatment, and MoPH’s preparation to combat the disease,

Majroh directed health officials to implement special measures and establish separate isolation wards within healthcare centers, and assigned a number of technical committees on the treatment of patients, raising public awareness, and using the existing facilities within the centers. Majroh stressed the importance of coordination among healthcare agencies in combating the disease.

The first case of black fungus was identified in Kabul some days back. Fever, cough, vomiting, blackheads on the nose and mouth, and nausea are common symptoms of the disease, and most people with the COVID-19 are at risk. Several media outlets quoted the MoPH that three cases of the variant have been recorded in Kabul, Baghlan, and Samangan provinces.

Also, Saudi Arabia will restrict travel to and entry from Afghanistan over coronavirus concerns, the state news agency (WAS) reported on Saturday. The ban goes into effect on July 4 and will apply to anyone who has been in the country within the last 14 days, it said. Saudi citizens returning before Sunday will be exempted. In fact, the Kabul embassy too has closed down due to the COVID-19 concerns.

3 / July 2021