Harare, (New Ziana) – Government on Tuesday gave an ultimatum to health workers who are yet to get vaccinated against Covid-19 to get inoculated in the next two weeks or risk losing monthly insurance payouts being paid to the workers.
Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services Minister, Monica Mutsvangwa said at least 20 percent of the frontline workers had not taken up the opportunity to get vaccinated since mid-February.
When Zimbabwe launched its Covid-19 vaccination drive, health workers, as frontline staff were given the first priority.
“Given the risk this poses not only to other workers but also to patients, Cabinet has set 14 July 2021 as the deadline for the vaccination of the frontline workers,” Mutsvangwa told a post-Cabinet media briefing.
“After this date those who would not have been vaccinated will not receive Covid-19 insurance payouts. For the avoidance of doubt, those vaccinated staff members who test positive will, however, still be eligible for the COVID-19 insurance pay out.”
The ultimatum comes as the country is currently experiencing a third wave that has seen new Covid-19 cases more than quadrupling in the past two weeks.
Since the launch of the Covid-19 vaccination drive in February this year, nearly 765 000 people have received the first dose while about 535 000 got the second jab.
Zimbabwe has since February received over 2.2 million doses of Sinopharm, Sinovac, Covax and Sputink V vaccines.
An additional 6.5 million vaccines, split in batches, are expected to be delivered in July, August and September.
The country is targeting to vaccinate at least 10 million people to achieve herd immunity.
Since the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic in March 2020, Zimbabwe has recorded 47 282 cases and 1 749 deaths as at June 28, 2021.