A pharmacist displays an ampoule of Dexamethasone at the Erasme Hospital amid the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) outbreak, in Brussels, Belgium. Picture: Yves Herman
A pharmacist displays an ampoule of Dexamethasone at the Erasme Hospital amid the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) outbreak, in Brussels, Belgium. Picture: Yves Herman

South Africa's Covid-19 cases now at 76 334, with another 57 deaths reported

By IOL Reporter Time of article published Jun 17, 2020

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Cape Town - South Africa's confirmed Covid-19 cases have increased by 2801 to 76 334 over the past 24 hours, Health Minister Zweli Mkhize said on Tuesday. 

The country also recorded a further 57 Covid-19-related deaths. 

The total number of people who have died from Covid-19 since the first patient was identified 101 days ago now stands at 1625, which represents a mortality rate of 2.1%, Mkhize said.

The Western Cape continues to have the highest number of infections and deaths, while the Northern Cape and Mpumalanga - with one Covid-19-linked fatality each - have recorded the lowest number of deaths.

All statistics supplied by National Department of Health

Deaths and recoveries

Of the latest deaths, 44 were from Western Cape, 9 from the Eastern Cape and 4 from KwaZulu-Natal.

The statistics released by Mkhize on Tuesday show that  42 063 people have recovered from Covid-19 to date. This represents a recovery rate of 55.1%.

To date, 1 172 513  tests have been conducted cumulatively.

Breakthrough in Covid-19 therapeutics research

Mkhize said the health department is excited that there has been an important breakthrough in one of the therapeutic trials for Covid-19 management. 

"The Recovery (Randomised Evaluation of Covid-19 thERapY) trial has published results on the therapeutic merits of low dose dexamethasone which are extremely promising and are easily implementable in our country."

He added that dexamethasone is a well-known and widely used steroid which has potent anti-inflammatory properties. It is used in allergic reactions, asthma and other conditions where the inflammatory component of the disease needs to be controlled for better outcomes.

"We are very pleased that the Ministerial Advisory Committee on Covid-19 has issued an advisory pertaining to the clinical applications of these breaking study results."

* For the latest on the Covid-19 outbreak, visit IOL's special #Coronavirus page.

** If you think you have been exposed to the Covid-19 virus, please call the 24-hour hotline on 0800 029 999 or visit sacoronavirus.co.za


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