- South Africa's confirmed cases of the coronavirus have spiked to 85
- This is an increase of 23 cases since Tuesday's announcement
- Included in this figure are eight cases of local transmission
The Department of Health has announced an increase in the number of coronavirus cases in South Africa.
In a statement on the situation, Health Minister Dr Zweli Mkhize outlined the new cases of the virus:
"Fellow South Africans, I wish to announce that as of today, South Africa now has 85 confirmed cases of Covid-19. This means there has been an increase of 23 from yesterday's announcement."
Included in this amount are eight cases of local transmission, explained the minister:
"It is notable that there are eight cases of local transmission. I must inform the public that there was a debate with clinicians, epidemiologists, virologists on when we, as government must release results to the public. These experts raised an issue of an ethical obligation to immediately alert patients as soon as the results become available. This therefore means that by the time a confirmation test is conducted in public laboratories, patients would have been notified of their initial results."
Mkhize explained that in the effort to be transparent with the nation, the state would be releasing positive results before a conformation test could be done:
"In our efforts to ensure transparency, we have decided to release results as they are submitted by both public and private labs. In instances where our confirmation tests give contrary results, we will inform the public, make reference to that specific result previously announced and give the outcome of the confirmation results."
Mkhize assured the nation that, although the focus is on transparency, the government would still take care when releasing results:
"Whilst we appreciate the importance of being transparent with South Africans, we will not do so irresponsibly and not take into account all clinical and any other broader implications of the information we give to you."
Briefly.co.za reported that President Cyril Ramaphosa had announced a national disaster during a press briefing on Sunday, urging citizens to do their part in preventing the further spread of the virus.
The breakdown of the new cases is as follows:
Gauteng: 14 new cases
- 45-year-old male (travelled to Belgium, UK, France and the US)
- 37-year-old male (travelled to UK)
- 54-year-old female (travelled to the US)
- 52-year-old male (travelled to UK)
- 25-year-old male (travelled to UK)
- 52-year-old (travelled to Italy)
- 59-year-old male (travelled to UK and Dubai)
- 57-year-old male (travelled to US)
- 60-year-old male (travelled to US)
- 37-year-old female (travelled to Italy and Dubai)
- 21-year-old female with no travel history
- 34-year-old male with no travel history
- 26-year-old female with no travel history
- 32-year-old female with no travel history
KwaZulu-Natal: 4 new cases
- 48-year-old male (travelled to Dubai)
- 59-year-old female with no travel history
- 5-year-old male with no travel history
- 3-year-old male with no travel history
Western Cape: 5 new cases
- 3-year-old male (travelled to UK)
- 58-year-old male (travelled to UK and Austria)
- 2-year-old male with no travel history
- 62-year-old female (travelled to UK and Ethiopia)
- 71-year-old female (travelled to UK)
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