A week after the U.S. advised against all travel to Tanzania, its embassy in the East African country says it is “aware of significant number of Covid-19 cases since January 2021”.
Mitigation and prevention measures against the virus remain limited, a statement from the embassy says. It warned that Tanzania’s health facilities could be quickly overwhelmed if the situation continues.
The Tanzanian government has not released aggregate numbers on COVID-19 cases or deaths since April 2020. Healthcare facilities in Tanzania can become quickly overwhelmed in a healthcare crisis. Limited hospital capacity throughout Tanzania could result in life-threatening delays for emergency medical care.
“The Department of State’s travel advisory level for Tanzania is Level 3 urging people to “Reconsider Travel” due to COVID-19. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention advises travellers to avoid all travel to Tanzania.”
A month after Tanzania last published Covid-19 data, President John Magufuli declared the country “coronavirus-free”.
Yet the authorities have continued to give mixed messages about the virus.
Last week, the health minister recommended a vegetable smoothie and steam inhalation as a way of preventing the virus.
This came a few days after Magufuli warned officials against importing Covid-19 vaccines and without giving evidence saying they could harm people, .
In another development, officials have dismissed allegations made by the Open University of Tanzania that coronavirus is “spreading fast” in the country.