Citizen Reporter
Reporter
2 minute read
24 Dec 2021
7:35 pm

Covid-19 update: SA records 18,847 new cases and 81 deaths

Citizen Reporter

20.980,990 tests have been conducted in both public and private sectors.

Picture for illustration: citizen.co.za/Michel Bega

As of Friday, South Africa has recorded a total of 3.393,109 positive cases of Covid-19, with 18,847 new cases identified in the past 24 hours.

This increase represents a 29.4% positivity rate. 

The majority of new cases today are from KwaZulu-Natal (26%), followed by Western Cape (25%). Gauteng accounted for 18%; Eastern Cape accounted for 11% and Free State and North West each accounted for 5%. Limpopo and Mpumalanga each accounted for 4% and Northern Cape accounted for 3% of today’s new cases.

As per the National Department of Health, a further 81 Covid-19 related deaths have been reported, bringing total fatalities to 90,743 to date, the National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD), a division of the National Health Laboratory Service, has announced.

20.980,990 tests have been conducted in both public and private sectors.

There has been an increase of 321 hospital admissions in the past 24 hours. 

Health Department stops tracing, quarantining of Covid contacts

After receiving recommendations from the Ministerial Advisory Committee (MAC) on Covid-19, the Department of Health has decided to stop contact tracing and quarantining for contacts of confirmed cases of Covid-19, with immediate effect.

The department on Thursday night published revisions to contact tracing, quarantine and isolation protocols.

According to the amended protocols, all contact tracing would be stopped with immediate effect, except in congregate settings such as prisons and old age homes where a number of people reside in close proximity.

ALSO READ: Here’s why the MAC says SA should stop tracing, quarantining of Covid contacts

All contacts of confirmed coronavirus cases must not be tested unless if they develop symptoms.

A circular released by the department stated: “All contacts must continue with their normal duties with heightened monitoring (daily temperature testing, symptom screening) of any early signs.

“If they develop symptoms then they should be tested and be managed according to the severity of the symptoms.”

With regards to the quarantining protocols, all quarantine is to be stopped with immediate effect for both vaccinated and unvaccinated contacts of confirmed cases of Covid-19.

No testing for Covid-19 is required irrespective of the risk exposure, unless the contact becomes symptomatic.

Additional reporting by Thapelo Lekabe