Minister of Health Dr Zweli Mkhize on Tuesday said the number of coronavirus deaths in the country had risen to 93, with three new deaths recorded, all of them in the Western Cape.
He is unpacking South Africa’s COVID-19 situational analysis and the way forward into a post lockdown scenario.
The minister is joined by Deputy Health Minister Dr Joe Phaahla, provincial MECs and experts from the National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD).
On Tuesday there were 4,996 confirmed cases across South Africa.
On the mortality rate, Mkhize said more work needed to be done to ensure a strong impact on the infection.
“We have a burden of hypertension, over 4.5 million people in SA have diabetes. Such diseases factor in COVID-19 infection. Currently, the country has 4,996 cases of COVID-19.”
The total recoveries are now at 2,073 while over six million people have been screened.
The country has seen 185,000 tests, with 25,000 of them in the public sector.
Mkhize said: “People need to understand the message of staying at home, the message of sanitising and wearing masks.”
He added that South Africa had not seen a rapid rise of infection in a way that it had done at the beginning of the outbreak.
Here is a breakdown of the cases and deaths by province:
Western Cape: 1,870 cases – 38 deaths
Gauteng: 1,377 cases and 8 deaths
KwaZulu-Natal: 919 cases and 30 deaths
Eastern Cape: 616 cases and 10 deaths
Free State: 113 cases and 5 deaths
Limpopo: 31 cases and 2 deaths
North West: 29 cases and zero deaths
Mpumalanga: 24 cases and zero deaths
Northern Cape: 17 cases and zero deaths
The minister said the country had not seen a rapid rise in infections: “South Africa has delayed the peak, giving health facilities time to cope.”
On concerns raised about protective equipment, Mkhize said the biggest ammunition was the training of healthcare workers and for them to be well protected.
“Protective gear tends to be a moving target; however, we are assured that there is adequate stock. I want to assure professionals where doctors are looking for placement, they should approach their respective provinces. We would like to say that we will be taking in more people.”
He said doctors who served in the private sector had approached the government, offering their services in the public sector.
Mkhize said the 217 doctors from Cuba would augment South African human resources.
The Cuban doctors are in the country at South Africa’s request.
This is how the Cuban doctors will be deployed according to provinces:
Western Cape – 26
Gauteng – 29
KwaZulu-Natal – 28
Eastern Cape – 20
Free State – 17
Mpumalanga – 13
Limpopo – 13
North West – 13
Northern Cape – 11
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Source – EWN