As of today, there are 318 newly confirmed cases of COVID-19 in South Africa, bringing the total number of cases to 3953.
Today we regrettably report 10 new deaths. This brings the total to 75. The new deaths are from the following provinces: Western Cape: 6 KZN: 2 Gauteng: 1 Eastern Cape: 1
“We convey our condolences to the families and friends. Preventing COVID-19 from spreading is everybody’s job.”
As of Thursday, the Western Cape surpassed Gauteng’s confirmed cases and now has the highest number of COVID-19 positive cases in the country.
“A further analysis is being done as we are observing outbreak clusters in the Western Cape. This means that a large number of people who operate and interact in the same area (eg. factories, shopping centres) are testing positive,” Minister of Health, Dr Zweli Mkhize said.
The minister expressed concern at the steady increase of positive cases.
“While this concerns us, we are also pleased that the intensified community screening and testing campaign is assisting in finding more COVID-19 positive patients,” Mkhize said.
A total of 143 570 tests have been conducted at public and private institutions.
“This allows us to take the necessary actions such as isolation, quarantine or hospitalisation if required. The epidemiologists also continue to analyse these trends in order for the country to better understand the impact of the outbreak as it unfolds.”
“We commend all the health workers and tracers for their hard work in different parts of our country. We also thank members of the community for heeding government’s call to participate in mass screening and testing”
“We also thank members of the community for heeding government’s call to participate in the mass screening and testing. This is well reflected in the increasing numbers of people who have been screened to date, which is 3 633 037. Of the individuals screened, 24 174 have been referred for testing,” the Minister said.
No new cases were recorded in the Northern Cape, Limpopo or Free State.
“Furthermore, we have seen the number of these provinces confirmed cases not increasing. This also illustrates the effectiveness of their positive patients’ treatment and management,” the Minister said.
SA’s response to COVID-19
The Director-General of the World Health Organisation held an information-sharing session with Health Ministers from across the globe on Thursday.
South Africa was given an opportunity to share its experiences in its management and response to COVID-19.
“We appreciate the leadership provided by His Excellency, President Cyril Ramaphosa in fighting this COVID-19 pandemic. The country’s response thus far has even laid an opportunity for lessons to be learnt by other countries. Whilst we are pleased with this, we remain fully aware that we still have a long way ahead of us and face a tough battle to fight together as a country,” the Minister said.
He said the WHO’s guidance for us as a country and the rest of the world remains invaluable.
Gauteng COVID-19 cases reach 1 224
And while the province has the highest number of infections, the death toll remains the lowest at seven when compared to the Western Cape and KwaZulu-Natal, two other provinces that are also leading in the infection rate.
Johannesburg tops the list of COVID-19 infections, followed by Ekurhuleni and Tshwane, according to Gauteng Health Department’s statement released on Thursday,
Hotspots in Johannesburg include Alexandra, Wynberg, Sandton, Orange Grove and Houghton.
The department said there are currently 46 people hospitalised in both public and private facilities, while the province has a record 826 recoveries.
Gauteng has also been hard at work fast-tracking contact tracing. Out of the 7 479 people who had contact with people who tested positive for COVID-19, 2 975 have since concluded the 14-day monitoring period with no symptoms reported and have now been “de-isolated”.
Meanwhile, provincial department spokesperson Kwara Kekana said there are currently 28 Gauteng health employees that have tested positive.
“All cases are mild and did not require hospitalisation, except for one and was discharged on Friday, 17 April 2020.
“The first cohort of workers that tested positive contracted the virus through social circles and not at the workplace,” she added.
Eleven have recuperated and most are back at work. “The rest of the employees are being monitored.”
The department is also busy disinfecting various facilities across the province.
And while there has been a shortage of Personal Protective Equipment across the globe for health professionals, the provincial health department said they have enough supplies to continue to procure and replenish their stock. – SAnews.gov.za