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Burundi launches mass screening campaign against COVID-19

Bujumbura , Burundi | XINHUA | The Burundian government on Monday kicked off a mass screening campaign in the commercial captial Bujumbura to fight the COVID-19 pandemic in the country.

Three sites of a technical school, a hotel and a Catholic parish were chosen to screen people who voluntarily receive the test for the coronavirus.

The campaign was kicked off in the commercial capital Bujumbura as it hosts the majority of the novel coronavirus cases in the central African nation, Health Minister Thaddee Ndikumana told a press briefing later on Monday.

Over 419 people had been screened in the three sites by the evening, far more than the expected number of around 250, said Ndikumana.

Those who got screened will get the results in less than 24 hours, he said.

The minister also said the government plan to start the screening in the countryside next week by Friday, which will be done at provincial towns.

Since late March, more than 3,000 people were screened and 191 of them tested positive for COVID-19, including one death, and 80 percent of the infected have been discharged from hospital, according to the official.

On June 30, Burundian President Evariste Ndayishimiye said COVID-19 is “a big enemy” for Burundians and he commits to combating the virus.

The president announced that the soap price will be reduced up to 50 percent by the government funding to boost hygiene, while the price of water will be reduced by the government in some parts of the country including major towns until the pandemic is eradicated.



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