Citizen Reporter
3 minute read
6 Jan 2022
9:07 pm

Covid-19 update: 9,860 new cases reported in SA

Citizen Reporter

The cumulative number of recoveries now stands at 3.260,642, with a recovery rate of 93%

Members of the public sit in a waiting area in case of an immediate reaction after receiving booster shots at a Covid-19 vaccination centre set up in Schiphol Sirport in Schiphol, near Amsterdam, on January 6, 2022, amid the Covid-19 (novel coronavirus) pandemic. (Photo by Remko de Waal / ANP / AFP) / Netherlands OUT

As of Thursday, South Africa has recorded a total of 3.504,554 positive cases of Covid-19, with 9,860 new cases identified in the past 24 hours.

The majority of new cases today, according to the National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD), are from Western Cape (27%), followed by Gauteng (22%). KwaZulu-Natal accounted for 21%; Eastern Cape accounted for 11%; Free State, Mpumalanga, North West and Northern Cape each accounted for 4% respectively; and Limpopo accounted for 3% of today’s new cases.

The cumulative number of recoveries now stands at 3.260,642, with a recovery rate of 93%

551 deaths have also been reported, bringing the total number of Covid-19 related deaths to 92,112.

According to the Department of Health, the country has today recorded over 500 Covid-19 deaths due to going audit exercise conducted by provinces across the country to address a backlog of Covid-19 mortality and new cases.

Out of 551 deaths recorded today, only 45 occurred in the past 48 hours.

Provinces such as the Western Cape and KwaZulu-Natal account for 476 historical combined deaths in patients with documented SARS-Cov-2 infection.

“The identification of these historic deaths is part of the process to align the provincial death line list with excess deaths,” said the department in a statement.

“The provincial Covid-19 dashboards reflect Covid-19 deaths by date of death rather than by date reported, and provides the most accurate trends in deaths in patients with documented SARS-CoV-2 infection.”

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Calling Omicron ‘mild’ a mistake, warns WHO

The Omicron variant of Covid-19 is killing people across the globe and should not be dismissed as mild, the World Health Organization insisted Thursday.

WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said the record numbers of people catching the new variant — which is rapidly out-competing the previously-dominant Delta variant in many countries — meant hospitals were being overwhelmed.

“While Omicron does appear to be less severe compared to Delta, especially in those vaccinated, it does not mean it should be categorised as mild,” Tedros told a press conference.

“Just like previous variants, Omicron is hospitalising people and it is killing people,” he explained.

“In fact, the tsunami of cases is so huge and quick, that it is overwhelming health systems around the world.”

Just under 9.5 million new Covid-19 cases were reported to the WHO last week — a record, up 71 percent on the week before.

But even this was an underestimate, Tedros said, as it did not reflect the backlog of testing around the Christmas-New Year holidays, positive self-tests not registered, and overburdened surveillance systems missing cases.

– Omicron not the end –

The WHO’s Covid-19 technical lead Maria Van Kerkhove said it was “very unlikely” that Omicron would be the last variant of concern before the pandemic is over.

In facing the more transmissible Omicron variant, Van Kerkhove urged people to step up the measures they were already taking to protect themselves against the virus.

“Do everything that we have been advising better, more comprehensively, more purposefully,” she said.

“We need people to hang in there and really fight.”

Van Kerkhove added that she was stunned by how sloppily some people were wearing facemasks.

“It needs to cover your nose and mouth… wearing a mask below your chin is useless,” she said.

Looking ahead to this year, Bruce Aylward, the WHO’s frontman on accessing coronavirus tools, added that there was “no need to finish 2022 in a pandemic”.

But WHO emergencies director Michael Ryan said that without vaccine equity, “we will be sitting here at the end of 2022 having somewhat the same conversation, which, in itself, would be a great tragedy”.

Compiled by Vhahangwele Nemakonde. Additional reporting by AFP