Tanzania said it now has 408 new cases of Covid-19 patients, as the East African nation takes another step in confronting the issue after months of denying the pandemic was a problem.
Health Minister Dorothy Gwajima said at an event to promote the public wearing of masks in the capital Dodoma that “284 of the patients were hospitalised on oxygen therapy as of July 8.”
The latest data represents a 300% increase from a figure of around 100 new cases announced by President Samia Suluhu Hassan on June 28.
Tanzania needs to publish data on the spread of Covid-19 before getting approval for a more than $570 million emergency loan from the International Monetary Fund, an official from the Washington-based lender said last month.
Reporting numbers on coronavirus infections and deaths would be an about turn for the government that hasn’t done so since May last year when then-President John Magufuli’s administration played down the threat from the disease.
Since his death in March, new leader Hassan has signaled a shift in policy by appointing an advisory team on how to tackle the pandemic and started a process to procure vaccines.