As the Covid-19 pandemic continues to spread at a high rate in the country, the Family Rights, Elderly and Child Protection (FRECHIP) has expressed worry that elderly people, who are also more prone to the pandemic, are not properly assisted with the preventive measures.
FRECHIP Executive Director, Esmie Tembenu, said the elderly people, more especially those living in rural areas, have no access to Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and proper messages about the pandemic.
According to World Health Organization (WHO), older people are at highest risk from COVID-19 since they don’t have as strong an immune system so they are more vulnerable to infectious diseases.
Tembenu therefore has asked the authorities to come up with exact statistics for the elderly people in the rural areas and put in place proper measures to assist them.
Tembenu said: “if we go into the villages we will find more elderly persons who are very pool so that they can’t afford the necessities that can assist them in the fight against the pandemic hence putting their lives at higher risk.
“Government through the ministry responsible for the elderly must go into the villages and get the actual number of the marginalized elderly persons who are vulnerable to COVID-19 pandemic and bail them out of the challenges.”
She further expressed the need for free distribution of PPE’s such as face masks to the elderly since they can’t afford to purchase them.
Cumulatively, Malawi has recorded over 3000 COVID-19 cases.