Durban: The National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD) has noted a spike in COVID-19 cases in Gauteng, more especially in the Tshwane region.
According to reports the NICD Acting Executive Director, Prof Adrian Puren, said they had observed an increase in the 7-day moving average of new COVID cases, and the percentage testing positive in Gauteng, particularly in Tshwane amongst the 10 – 29 age group over the past week.
The NICD has also identified a cluster amongst the 20 – 44 age group at an institute of higher education in Tshwane.
Meanwhile, the Kingdom of Eswatini on Monday conducted about 445 tests and only 4 were positive. As of Monday, the country has recorded 46491 COVID-19 cases.
According to reports on Monday, the institute reported 312 new COVID-19 cases that have been identified in South Africa, which brings the total number of laboratory-confirmed cases to 2,930,174. This increase represents a 2.3% positivity rate. As per the National Department of Health, a further 10 COVID-19 related deaths have been reported, bringing total fatalities to 89,584 to date.
The NICD said that it was monitoring the trends to see if these increases persist.
“Localised increases in case numbers or clusters are not unexpected, however, it is hard to say whether the increases indicate the start of a widespread resurgence,” he said.
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According to the NICD, previous waves have been driven to a large extent by the emergence of new SARS-CoV-2 variants, Beta in the second wave and Delta in the third wave.
“Genomic sequencing in South Africa has, to date, not yet detected the emergence of any new variants which are making up an increasing proportion of the sequences,” Puren said.
He said regardless of potential new variants in the future, the importance of non-pharmaceutical interventions remained unchanged, and encouraged individuals to wear masks, practice hand hygiene, maintain social distancing and gather in well-ventilated spaces.