File picture: Bongani Shilubane/African News Agency (ANA)
File picture: Bongani Shilubane/African News Agency (ANA)

Mkhize explains reason for rise in Covid-19 deaths in SA

By IOL Reporter Time of article published Oct 8, 2020

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Cape Town – A total of 160 more Covid-19-related deaths have been recorded since the last report, Health Minister Zweli Mkhize said on Thursday, who admitted that there has been an investigation into the ’’noticeable increase in the number of deaths recently’’.

A total of 105 deaths were recorded in KwaZulu-Natal, 18 in the Eastern Cape, 6 in the Free State, 13 in Gauteng, 6 in Limpopo, 4 in Mpumalanga and 8 in the Western Cape.

The cumulative number of detected Covid-19 cases has risen to 686 891, with 1 736 new cases identified since the last report.

The number of recoveries now stand at 618 771, which translates to a recovery rate of 90%.

'’There has been a noticeable increase in the number of deaths recently which caused us concern as we have received reports from the Medical Research Council (MRC) that there have been no excess deaths for three weeks in a row,“ Mkhize said.

’’We therefore consulted the provinces to ascertain the reason for the increased numbers. We have received reports that the provinces are implementing the recommendations of the MRC to reconcile the data with Home Affairs deaths data.

’’In addition, provinces are auditing the deaths data either by mining data from the DATCOV surveillance reports and identifying unreported deaths or auditing the facilities on the ground.

’’We welcome this robust refinement of data collation as it reassures us that, moving forward, we excersise precision in our epidemiological surveillance.’’

The cumulative number of tests conducted to date is 4 339 686, with 21 172 new tests conducted since the last report.

Data supplied by the Department of Health

Fewer than two-thirds or 64% of South Africans would accept a Covid-19 vaccine when and if it becomes available, a recent Ipsos survey has found. Of that 64%, only 29% “strongly agreed” to a vaccine while the rest “somewhat agreed”.

This is lower than the average of 74% of about 20 000 adults surveyed in 27 countries who said they would agree to get a vaccine.

The survey conducted on behalf of the World Economic Forum found that the number one reason for rejecting a Covid-19 vaccine was out of fear of adverse events (side effects), followed by concerns about the effectiveness of a vaccine against Covid-19.

South Africa falls in the group with the least intention to get vaccinated (below 70%), which includes Russia (54%), Poland (56%), Hungary (56%), France (59%), South Africa (64%), and Italy, Germany, the US and Sweden (all at 67%).

The group most willing to get a Covid-19 vaccine includes China (97%), Brazil (88%), Australia (88%), and India (87%).

Meanwhile, the World Health Organisation (WHO) reported a record one-day increase in global coronavirus cases on Thursday, with the total rising by 338 779 in 24 hours.

Deaths rose by 5 514 to a total of 1.05 million. India reported 78 524 new cases, followed by Brazil at 41 906 and the United States with 38 904 new infections.

The previous WHO record for new cases was 330 340 on 2 October. The agency reported a record 12 393 deaths on April 17.


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