Health Minister Zweli Mkhize was left to deliver the bad news to South Africa – something his role relentlessly dictates. As of 19:15 on 2 April 2020, 1 462 South Africans have tested positive for coronavirus – up by 82 from Wednesday. There are still just five deaths to report, but this is subject to change.
Our recent deaths include the renowned scientist and HIV researcher Gita Ramjee. She passed away in Durban on Tuesday. A former colleague confirmed that she lost her life due to complications arising from COVID-19. A 79-year-old male from Gauteng also presented with respiratory distress and lost his life this week.
Zweli Mkhize rolls out ‘home-testing kits’ for COVID-19
As South Africa enters day seven of lockdown, the Health Department has seized the opportunity of civilian self-isolation to intensify testing efforts in an attempt to halt the virus’ spread.
On Wednesday evening, while updating the country on the latest COVID-19 statistics, Health Minister Zweli Mkhize reiterated that early detection was a fundamental factor in the successful fight against the deadly coronavirus.
Adding to what President Ramaphosa had already announced — the deployment of 10 000 field workers, mobile testing units and technological tracing solutions — Mkhize expanded on government’s intensified, pre-emptive approach.
The health minister confirmed that the 47 541 COVID-19 tests which had been completed, primarily in private laboratories, was insufficient when compared to the size of South Africa’s population.