A top United States infectious diseases expert, Anthony Fauci, has called for a move away from lockdowns as a way to combat Covid-19. Briefly.co.za explores the latest updates on the continued fight against the coronavirus pandemic in South Africa.
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With Covid-19 infections in South Africa spiking and politicians warning of a possible reinstatement of the national lockdown ahead of the festive season, numerous citizens have raised their concerns.
However, it seems top specialists have now cautioned against reducing economic activity as a method against the spread of infections, calling for alternative solutions.
Briefly.co.za explores the latest updates on the Covid-19 pandemic below:
1. Top US expert warns against imposing lockdowns
National Institute of Allergies and Infectious Diseases director Anthony Fauci has cautioned against shutting down entire countries as an answer to the continued threat posed by the coronavirus.
Fauci has admitted that SA has managed to outwit the United States when it came to responding to the pandemic, calling for a unified response to the pandemic:
"We have got to get away from the mentality of either shutting down completely or 'the hell with it, do anything you want to do without any precautions'. It is the same way back in the days of HIV when we would just say no to drugs or no sex at all. It doesn't work that way."
News24 reports that Fauci, who advised six presidents over a career that spans almost four decades, had made these comments during a webinar hosted by University of Cape Town professor Linda-Gail Bekker.
2. Mkhize on latest statistics
Health Minister Dr Zweli Mkhize has provided South Africans with another update on the Covid-19 pandemic.
In a statement issued by the Department of Health on Monday evening, the minister commented that:
"As of today, the cumulative number of detected COVID-19 cases is 716 759 with 891 new cases identified since the last report".
In addition to the rise in infections, Mkhize commented on the number of recent fatalities:
"Regrettably, we report 40 COVID-19 related deaths today: 8 from Eastern Cape, 4 from Gauteng, 1 from KwaZulu Natal, 4 from Mpumalanga, 16 from North West and 7 from Western Cape. This brings the total number of COVID-19 related deaths to 19 008."
Earlier, Briefly.co.za reported that KwaZulu-Natal Premier Sihle Zikalala has warned citizens that a hard lockdown seems inevitable unless cases are reduced.
Speaking during a media briefing on Sunday, the Premier said that the statistics are a sign that a clampdown may be necessary:
“Looking at the statistics, we can now safely say that we are definitely going back into a hard lockdown if there is no urgent and drastic change in behaviour."
The politician explained that a second wave would be 'stronger and deadlier', not just when it comes to fatalities but economic fallout:
“There is no use in chasing profits today only to be shut down by a hard lockdown tomorrow."
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