Illegal Covid-19 testing sites are mushrooming in the country as some Zimbabweans intending to travel outside the country seek fake test papers to cross the national borders.
Zimbabwe opened its borders on 1 December after a closure of nearly eight months to curb the spread of Covid-19 pandemic.
The closures seriously affected businesses mostly, those involving informal traders many of whom travel to neighbouring countries seeking goods for resell back home.
However, the reopening of the national borders has brought little joy to the traders as they are required to fork out US$60 to get a negative Covid-19 pass that will allow one to travel out of the country.
In statement Thursday, the ministry of health said it has noticed an influx of illegal Covid-19 testing sites in cities as travellers seek to circumvent the high costs demanded by registered testing centres.
“It has come to the attention of the ministry of health that there are laboratories carrying out Covid-19 testing without the prior requirement of assessment and certification,” the ministry said.
“The ministry of health wishes to advise that anyone who wishes to carry out Covid-19 testing should apply to the Medical Laboratory and Clinical Scientist Council of Zimbabwe.
“All results from any unauthorised lab shall be regarded as invalid and of no use for the purposes for which they were intended to serve. Any health institution concerned which contravenes Part XVII, section 99(1) of the Health Professions Act [Chapter 27:19] shall be dealt with in terms of section 99(2) of the same Act.”
Zimbabwe has also seen an increase in the number of citizens who are testing Covid-19 positive with the country witnessing a second wave of the pandemic.
On Wednesday, 227 cases were recorded with every provinces recording new infections.