COVID-19 WRAP | SA moves to level 2 as Covid-19 infections decline

12 September 2021 - 05:30 By TimesLIVE
FILE PHOTO: Brendan Lo (13) receives a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine for the coronavirus disease at Northwell Health's Cohen Children's Medical Center in New Hyde Park, New York, US, on May 13, 2021.
FILE PHOTO: Brendan Lo (13) receives a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine for the coronavirus disease at Northwell Health's Cohen Children's Medical Center in New Hyde Park, New York, US, on May 13, 2021.
Image: REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton/File Photo

September 12 2021 - 21:27

Vaccine passport on the cards as Ramaphosa moves SA to level 2

According to Ramaphosa, the vaccine passport will come into effect soon.

He said the department of health is looking at ways of introducing the passport and said he would give more details on this when he reviews the measures.

“We will also be providing further information on an approach for vaccine passports, which can be used as evidence of vaccination for various purposes and events, so that people are able to demonstrate that they’ve been vaccinated. The department of health is looking at a variety of mechanisms in other countries to do it electronically through cellphones or other forms of demonstration,” Ramaphosa said.

September 12 2021 - 21:00

September 12 2021 - 20:19

Ramaphosa announces move from adjusted level 3 to level 2 as Covid-19 infections decline

President Cyril Ramaphosa announced the easing of Covid-19 regulations on Sunday evening, saying there had been a sustained decline in infections over the past few weeks.

The decision came after consultations with several organisations, experts and political party leaders.

“Based on these discussions, and the recommendations and the proposals that have been put forward, and the requests, cabinet has decided the country should be moved from an adjusted level 3 and be placed on adjusted level 2, with effect from tomorrow,” said Ramaphosa.

September 12 2021 - 18:30

Italy reports 34 coronavirus deaths on Sunday, 4,664 new cases

Italy reported 34 coronavirus-related deaths on Sunday against 57 the day before, the health ministry said, while daily new infections stood at 4,664 versus 5,193 on Saturday.

Italy has registered 129,919 deaths linked to Covid-19 since the start of the pandemic in February last year, the second highest toll in Europe after Britain and the eighth highest in the world. The country has reported 4.61 million cases to date.

Patients in hospital with coronavirus - not including those in intensive care units - stood at 4,113 on Sunday, from 4,117 a day earlier.

There were 36 new admissions to intensive care, edging down from 40 on Saturday. The total number of intensive care patients rose to 559 from a previous 547.Some 267,358 tests for Covid-19 were carried out in the past 24 hours, compared with a previous 333,741, the ministry said. 


September 12 2021 - 18:00

Britain records 56 Covid-19 deaths, 29,173 new cases

Britain reported 56 new deaths within 28 days of a positive Covid-19 test on Sunday, down from 156 a day earlier, and 29,173 new cases, again lower than the 29,547 recorded on Saturday.


September 12 2021 - 17:50

No vaccine passports: UK PM to set out winter Covid-19 plan

The British government abandoned plans to introduce Covid passports in England and will take steps to end some of its emergency powers that were enacted to fight the pandemic.

September 12 2021 - 16:13

Biden to announce new Covid-19 steps ahead of UN meeting, surgeon general says

US President Joe Biden will announce new steps to slow the spread of Covid-19 before the UN General Assembly meets, Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy said Sunday.

Murthy did not specify what those steps would be. The next session of the General Assembly opens Tuesday; the first day of general debate will be the following week.Speaking to CNN on Sunday, Murthy defended Biden's efforts to expand vaccination in the US.

“There will be more actions that we continue to work on, especially in the global front,” he said.

Biden on Thursday said he would require federal workers to be vaccinated against Covid-19 and mandate that large employers either require their workers to be vaccinated or regularly tested.

Biden said the US had donated 140 million vaccine doses to other countries. “That's American leadership on a global stage, and that's just the beginning,” he said. 


September 12 2021 - 15:51

City of Cape Town issues warning against illegal events

The City of Cape Town warned on Sunday it would intensify its clampdown on illegal events in the coming weeks.

The city said its events department had over the past five months identified 49 planned “unpermitted events” through social media and tip-offs, leading to the arrest of some event organisers.

The events permit office had issued a number of warning letters to event organisers which resulted in eight of them submitting applications for permits while five others decided to cancel planned events.

September 12 2021 - 14:02

No vaccine passports: UK PM, Boris Johnson to set out winter Covid-19 plan

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson will this week set out his plans to manage the Covid-19 pandemic in the winter months, announcing a decision to scrap the introduction of vaccine passports and steps to end some emergency powers.

Johnson, under fire from some in his governing Conservative Party for raising taxes to fix a health and social care crisis, looks set to try to soothe those critics by ditching plans to introduce passports despite an increasing number of coronavirus cases.

Speaking to broadcasters, Health Minister Sajid Javid said he did not anticipate more lockdowns and that the vaccine passports would not be introduced in England, as the government depends instead on vaccines and testing to defend the public.

September 12 2021 - 14:00

What you said: We should not have total booze bans during Covid-19 waves

Readers have told the government not to touch their booze, this despite a study revealing that full alcohol bans were more effective at reducing trauma cases than partial bans. 

The study published by the University of Cape Town (UCT) and Stellenbosch University looked at trauma cases during SA’s bans on alcohol sales, finding that full bans during high lockdown levels reduced trauma cases and assaults. 

The research used data from all trauma-related patients presented to the emergency centre at Mitchells Plain Hospital from March 1 to September 29 2020, and corresponding periods during 2019 were exported from an existing database.

September 12 2021 - 13:40

Overloaded truck was transporting corpses to the Eastern Cape

A weighbridge on the N2 at Somerset West in the Western Cape was temporarily closed after traffic officers discovered an overloaded truck was transporting a cargo of corpses.

The officers were conducting routine checks at the weighbridge on Saturday when the driver of the overloaded vehicle told them he was transporting bodies to the Eastern Cape.

Provincial transport and public works MEC Daylin Mitchell said the officers immediately closed the weighbridge and handed the scene over to the department of health and police for further investigation.

Health department spokesperson Mark van den Heever said the truck was transporting the bodies of people who had died from Covid-19 and other causes.

September 12 2021 - 09:32

Anti Covid-19 vaccine protesters clash with police in Greece

Greek police fired teargas and water canon on Saturday to break up a demonstration of thousands of people protesting against mandatory coronavirus vaccinations.

Authorities said protesters hurled flares at police in Greece's second-biggest city of Thessaloniki, who blocked them from trying to reach the area where Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis was due to deliver his annual economic address.

The annual speech typically attracts crowds of demonstrators, and police estimated more than 15,000 people, including labour unions, took part in the demonstrations on issues ranging from economic policy to Covid-19 vaccines.

September 12 2021 - 18:52

Sahpra approves Pfizer Covid-19 shot for children 12 and up

The South African Health Products Authority (Saphra) has approved Pfizer's Covid-19 vaccine for use by children aged 12 and older, paving the way for the government to offer vaccinations to teenagers.

The health regulator said the decision came after a review of updated safety and efficacy information submitted in March this year.

After a bumpy start, SA's vaccination campaign has ramped up in recent months with a solid supply of shots secured and just over 12% of its more than 60-million people vaccinated. That puts the country well ahead of others on the continent.