More than 2,400 new Covid-19 cases have been identified in SA, the National Institute for Communicable Diseases reported Thursday evening.
The NICD said a total of 2,465 new Covid-19 cases were registered in SA with the majority from Gauteng. This increase corresponded to a positivity rate of 6.5%.
A total of 114 Covid-19 deaths were registered.
According to statistics, 1,950 cases were registered in Gauteng in the last 24 hours. On Wednesday it was 1,018.
Gauteng has consistently been the province most severely affected by new infections in the past two weeks. This, as the NICD confirmed on Thursday that a new Covid-19 variant called B.1.1.529 was detected in SA.
More than 100 positive cases of the variant were registered in the country – and hundreds more are analyzed – after genome sequencing collaborations between the NICD and private laboratories. Other laboratories will confirm further cases when the sequencing results become known.
“It is not surprising that a new variant has been discovered in South Africa,” said the incumbent NICD managing director Prof. Adrian Puren. “Although the data is limited, our experts work overtime with all established monitoring systems in order to understand the new variant and the possible effects. Developments are happening at a rapid pace and the public has our assurance that we will keep them informed. “
” The number of cases discovered and the percentage of people who test positive are increasing rapidly, especially in Gauteng, North West and Limpopo, ”the NICD said in a statement.