South Africa records 6,336 coronavirus cases, highest on the continent

South Africa records 6,336 coronavirus cases, highest on the continent
South African President Cyril Ramaphosa visits the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) treatment facilities at the NASREC Expo Centre in Johannesburg, South Africa April 24, 2020. Jerome Delay/Pool via REUTERS/File Photo

Coronavirus infections in South Africa have risen to 6,336 the highest in the continent.

A statement from Health Minister Zweli Mkhize on Saturday said the total number of tests conducted to date is 230,686.

“13,164 tests were done in the last 24 hours. This is the highest number of tests done in a 24 hour cycle,” he said.

The Minister noted that the highest number of cases are from the Western Cape (2700) followed by Gauteng (1598), KwaZulu Natal (1051) and Eastern Cape (732).

He revealed that seven people the Western Cape and Free State died from COVID-19 bringing the total number of deaths in the country to 123.

71 of those who died were male and 52 were female.

The median age of patients who died is 64 years.

“We have looked at the data for patients who have been hospitalized and found that, consistent with evidence emerging worldwide, hypertension, diabetes and cardiac disease are the three most common co-morbidities associated with serious illness from COVID-19,” the Health Minister said.

Other co-morbidities that were seen were chronic pulmonary disease, asthma, chronic renal disease, malignancy, HIV, active and past tuberculosis.

Number of recoveries stands at 2549.

The Minister urged citizens who are over 63 years of age and those who live with health conditions that may pose a risk to take extra precaution as the Government eases the lockdown.

“I would also like to urge all South Africans to continue to stay at home as far as possible, only venturing out to perform essential tasks as we move through the stages of the gradual lifting of lockdown,” he said.

As of Saturday, the second highest number of coronavirus cases in Africa were reported in Egypt: 6,193.

According to data from the John Hopkins University, Morocco has 4,729 cases, Algeria 4,295, Nigeria 2,388, Ghana 2,169 and Cameroon 2,077.

In Eastern Africa, Djibouti has recorded the highest number of cases at 1,112.

Sudan has 592 cases, Tanzania 480 cases, Kenya 435, Rwanda 255, Ethiopia 133, Uganda 88, South Sudan 45 and Burundi 15.

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