Article by Lindiwe Karosa
The South African Department of Health has released a statement containing the country’s latest Covid-19 statistics.
The number of confirmed positive cases has risen to 1 665 along with an additional two confirmed fatalities. To date, 56 873 tests have been conducted – the question is, is the country testing fast enough to get ahead of the pandemic?
The rise in fatalities in South Africa might not be as rapid as in other countries but it is certainly a factor to be feared as statistics continue to rise during this nationwide lockdown.
The two new fatalities were confirmed to be an elderly male and an elderly female aged 82 & 86 respectively. As it stands, 7 of these deaths have occurred in the province of KwaZulu-Natal.
The Coordinating Committee of the African Union’s Continental Response to Covid-19 held a meeting yesterday that was co-chaired by President Cyril Ramaphosa to discuss the impacts of the virus, developments and strategies on how to curb the spread.
Ten Health Ministers from different African countries were briefed by Dr John Nkengasong who is the director of Africa Centres of Disease Control & Prevention.
The Ministers conferred with each other and shared their countries’ experiences, ultimately reaching the conclusion that it is pertaining to formulate a coordinated response to fight this pandemic.
The Department of Health also held a meeting with National Sector Leaders of the Traditional Health Practitioners (THP). The sector offered it’s support and expressed its willingness to actively assist the government by educating and implementing hygiene and social distancing in communities.
THP also highlighted their disappointment in them not being regarded as an essential service during the lockdown. The Department of Health realises that some people might present themselves to a traditional health practitioner first if they felt sick in any way however, this decision propels practitioners to refer patients to the public health system which might assist in discovering more cases.
The government has urged this sector to adhere to the regulations of the lockdown and not practise so that vulnerable citizens are not taken advantage of in the name of traditional healing.
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