AT least 22 CIMAS Medical Aid employees have tested positive for COVID-19, a move which has pushed CIMAS to close all Medical Aid walk in centres.
By Michael Gwarisa
One of the company’s receptionist tested positive for COVID-19 on Thursday this week, prompting a random testing session which unearthed the other 21 cases.
CIMAS Medical Aid Chief Executive Officer Mr Vulindlela Ndlovu said in a statement that contact tracing and testing subsequently revealed that other members of staff had been exposed to the virus as they had been in the same work area with the staff member who had tested positive.
The case was subsequently handed over to the COVID-19 Rapid Response Team and contact tracing began. We also proceeded to test staff in that facility as well as other staff who share transport with her and twenty one more have tested positive for the virus. While the source of the infections is unknown, common factors among those who tested positive is that they all shared transport and/or shared workstations, computers, or telephone handsets.
“All those who tested positive are in quarantine after being referred to the COVID-19 Rapid Response Team and the Harare City Health Department. They will also be covered for treatment under the recently introduced Cimas COVID-19 cover,” said Mr Ndlovu.
He added that as a precautionary measure, all Cimas premises in Harare have been deep cleaned and disinfected. The Cimas High Glen Clinic, in a separate incident, has been closed temporarily following the exposure of a staff member to a confirmed case.
“Our priority is the safety of our staff and continued service where possible for our members. We urge you to embrace digital platforms as well as virtual means of communication and interaction with the Society for all membership and pre-authorisation queries. We have introduced Dial-a-Doctor and a medicine delivery services to allow for virtual consultations and drug deliveries to your doorstep.”
He added that they have added precati9nery measures to curb the spread of the virus with the premises.
“Our Dial-a-Doctor service is available for virtual consultations, All Cimas Medical Aid Walk-In Centres will remain closed until further notice. All Clinics except Highglen Clinic will remain open for consultation STRICTLY by appointment.
“Pharmacist and dispensary services will remain available at the clinics. We will also be offering a delivery service, Medic Express for chronic medication. Please note that with effect from 27 July 2020 chronic medication will ONLY be available via Medic Express. Cimas Dialysis will be open as normal to ensure that no one misses a session Cimas Rescue will continue to service non-COVID-19 related emergency calls as well as offer telephonic medical advice and guidance on COVID-19 related matters. For all laboratory services will remain open. The Call Centre will be available 24/7.”