Third wave in SA is following same path as second wave - expert

By Kelly Jane Turner Time of article published Jun 2, 2021

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THE rising number of Covid-19 cases in South Africa is following the same upward trajectory as the country's second wave several months ago.

Senior researcher at the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) Dr Ridhwaan Suliman has compared the waves in an overlaying graph and says there are similarities.

“If we look at when we were last at an increasing trajectory and reporting this number of cases, it was towards the end of November 2020 as we were entering the second wave,” he said in an interview with the SABC.

“It does seem like the second wave was a lot steeper. Remember, at that point we had the new variant, B.1.351 that had become dominant in the coastal provinces. The indication from looking at the graph shows we are not quite so steep at this stage and will need a closer look.”

The country's current 7-day average is close to four thousand cases per day with a doubling rate of 21 days.

During the second wave, around four thousand cases were also recorded per day, however, the doubling rate was 15 days.

The total number of detected Covid-19 infections stands at over 1.6 million cases, while total deaths are at 56 601, with 95 logged on Tuesday.

Active cases in the country are at 48 911, with Gauteng recording 15 704, the Northern Cape with 8 269, and the Free State with 8 078.

Over a million South Africans have received a Covid-19 vaccine, according to Health Minister Zweli Mkhize.

“Therefore, today it is my pleasure to announce that we have breached the million mark and have vaccinated 1 045 104 individuals,” he said on Tuesday.

The country has vaccinated 479 768 people with the Johnson & Johnson vaccine under the Sisonke Programme, while at least 565 336 elderly people have received their first shot of the Pfizer jab.

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