South Africa has entered the third wave with the NICD announcing that 9,149 new cases have been recorded in the past day. One hundred new COVID-19 deaths have been added to South Africa’s death toll in the past 24-hour cycle, bringing the total number of fatalities to 57,410. Total cases since the start of the outbreak have now increased to over 1,722,000. So far, 1,593,000 people have recovered, translating to 92.5% of the recoveries.
Several churches have already closed their doors, opting for online services once again in an effort to protect their members. Many schools have closed temporarily for sanitization after several students and teachers tested positive for the virus.
While many residents still refuse to wear masks in public places, those who have recovered from the virus have spoken out about the long-term side-effects they have suffered since. Michael, an accountancy student at the University of the North West, tested positive for Covid in May 2020. “I still can not taste anything. My marks have also gone down considerably as I struggle to retain information while studying, something I never struggled with before.”
Antoinette, a 58-year-old woman from Johannesburg South suffered severe deterioration of her eyesight. “I have had several procedures done at an eye clinic, but I continue to struggle. I can no longer drive myself anywhere.”
A school principal from the Midvaal area has remained unwell since testing positive over a year ago. He has not been able to work a full day since his diagnosis and has to be taken home every day to rest and recover. He does much of his work from home now.
The department of Health continues to urge people to take the virus seriously and to wear masks, and sanitize frequently.
1,619,000 healthcare workers and people over 60 have now received at least one dose of a vaccine. The NICD said that coronavirus cases had exceeded the threshold as defined by the Ministerial Advisory Committee (MAC).