Brian Sokutu
Senior Print Journalist
3 minute read
20 May 2020
6:00 am

Testing glitches and ‘skewed results’ threaten level 3

Brian Sokutu

The ‘flawed’ and ‘fallible’ testing strategy for the coronavirus is too random, with a backlog of 15,000 in Cape Town and Johannesburg alone, casting doubt over the accuracy of government’s infection figures, says an expert.

Diepsloot residents can be seen getting screened and tested for the Covid-19 virus at a testing site in the Diepsloot Park, 8 May 2020, Johannesburg. Picture: Jacques Nelles

As the rest of South Africa gears up for lockdown easing to level 3, a leading medical expert has called on government to refine its flawed testing strategy. She said the current one yielded an unreliable detection rate – amid a massive more than two weeks backlog of about 15,000 cases in Cape Town and Johannesburg testing laboratories. While conceding that the 54-day government-imposed lockdown “certainly bought us time to prepare our public health facilities”, Dr Kerrin Begg yesterday sketched a picture of “an inefficient, ineffective, inaccurate and fallible testing strategy” she said should be abandoned. In appraising the Covid-19...