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COVID-19 WRAP | Covid-19: SA records 942 new cases, 37 deaths in 24 hours

13 October 2021 - 06:15 By TimesLIVE
A Costa Rican health care worker prepares a dose of the AstraZeneca vaccine as part of a vaccination campaign against the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) targeting migrants regardless of their legal status, in San Jose, Costa Rica October 12, 2021.
A Costa Rican health care worker prepares a dose of the AstraZeneca vaccine as part of a vaccination campaign against the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) targeting migrants regardless of their legal status, in San Jose, Costa Rica October 12, 2021.
Image: REUTERS/Mayela Lopez

October 13 2021 - 21:12

Covid-19: SA records 942 new cases, 37 deaths in 24 hours

There were fewer than 1,000 new Covid-19 cases recorded across SA on Wednesday, the National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD) said.

Of the 942 new cases, the most were in the Western Cape, where 220 infections were recorded. It was the only province to breach the 200 mark, with Gauteng recording 172, KwaZulu-Natal 142 and the Free State 103. Only these provinces reported more than 100 new cases in the past 24 hours.

There were also 37 newly recorded Covid-19 deaths, the NICD said, based on health department data.

October 13 2021 - 15:30

South Africa considered for Moderna plant site

Rwanda, Senegal and SA could be potential locations for Moderna's planned vaccine factory in Africa, the US drugmaker's co-founder and chairman said as it steps up its search for a site on the continent.

Moderna said last week it would build a plant in Africa to produce up to 500 million doses of vaccines a year, including its Covid-19 shot, as pressure grows on pharmaceutical companies to manufacture drugs in lower-income countries.

Noubar Afeyan, a biochemical engineer of Armenian origin who cofounded Moderna in 2010, said in an interview with Reuters late on Monday that the selection process would likely intensify now it has announced its Africa plans.

October 13 2021 - 13:43

Gauteng nears halfway mark for residents with at least one Covid-19 jab

While only about 2.5-million people in Gauteng are double-jabbed against the coronavirus, the province has been able to register more than 5-million vaccinations administered to its population of 11.3-million. 

In the Johannesburg metro, 2.3-million vaccines have been administered to its population of 4.4-million, the Gauteng health department said on Wednesday, with data tallied up to October 12.

Ekurhuleni has recorded 1.1-million inoculations for its 2.8-million eligible residents, and Tshwane 1.2-million for a population of 2.7-million.

October 13 2021 - 13:36

Zimbabwe police round up unvaccinated pub crawlers

The police in Zimbabwe are rounding up nightclub and pub patrons, owners and employees who fail to provide proof of their Covid-19 vaccination.

The prescribed fine for “consuming beer at a licensed premises without proof of vaccination” carries a ZW$2,000 (about R150) fine.

According to Statutory Instrument (SI) number 36 of Zimbabwe’s national lockdown regulations: “Any person in charge of licensed premises who, within or in the immediate vicinity of such premises, admits or serves any customer without proof of full vaccination exhibited by that customer shall be guilty of an offence.”

The law adds if found guilty, a person could, beyond the fine, be jailed for a period not exceeding a year.

The government allowed nightclubs and pubs to open their doors last week Tuesday, almost 19 months after the Covid-19 lockdown was enacted.

October 13 2021 - 13:30

More than 10-million South Africans fully vaccinated — here’s how long until ‘herd immunity’

South Africa has reached a milestone of 10-million fully vaccinated adults, according to figures released by the health department on Tuesday night.

The department administered 205,681 Pfizer and J&J vaccines in the last 24-hour cycle, with a total of more than 19-million vaccinations now having been administered.

Since the advent of Covid-19 in the country in March last year, SA has experienced three waves of the pandemic, affecting all nine provinces.

October 13 2021 - 12:49

Data suggests mRNA booster dose generates stronger antibody response after J&J shot — Axios

People who received Johnson & Johnson's Covid-19 vaccine will have a stronger neutralising antibody response if they get an mRNA shot as the second dose, Axios reported on Tuesday, citing a person who has seen data collected by the US National Institutes of Health (NIH).

October 13 2021 - 10:00

‘No brainer’ or not thinking straight? — EFF’s Ndlozi sparks debate with calls for more spectators in stadiums

EFF MP Mbuyseni Ndlozi had the TL in a huff on Tuesday after he suggested more fans be allowed into sports stadiums. 

According to lockdown regulations, amended and gazetted by co-operative governance and traditional affairs minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma on Monday, attendance at stadiums is limited to 750 people or less in indoor venues and 2,000 at outdoor venues. 

“If the venue is too small to hold the prescribed number of persons observing a distance of at least 1.5m from each other, then not more than 50% of the capacity of the venue may be used, subject to strict adherence to all health protocols and social distancing measures,” said Dlamini-Zuma

October 13 2021 - 09:36

Fully vaccinated rugby fans to return to club and professional matches

SA Rugby has told member unions to allow fully vaccinated supporters at club and professional rugby matches in line with the amended regulation 69 of the Disaster Management Act, which allows 2,000 fans at sporting venues. 

On Monday, co-operative governance and traditional affairs minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma amended regulation 69 of the Disaster Management Act to allow supporters to return for the first time in more than a year since the advent of the coronavirus pandemic.

On Tuesday, Bafana Bafana beat Ethiopia 1-0 in their 2022 Qatar FIFA World Cup qualifier in front of about 2,000 excited fans at FNB Stadium in what marked the first time fans returned to a sports venue in SA.

October 13 2021 - 09:00

Limited alcohol sales and relaxed curfew: Here’s what voting day under lockdown could look like

The health department has published recommendations the government should consider during the local government elections.

The elections are set to take place on November 1, with millions expected to cast their vote.

The recommendations were made by the Covid-19 ministerial advisory committee (MAC), late last month, suggesting the curfew should be relaxed and alcohol sales should be limited on election day.

Here’s how your voting day could pan out if the recommendations are approved:

October 13 2021 - 08:00

Plan to collect your R350 grant at an ATM without your card? Make sure your cell number is Rica'd

The SA Security Agency (Sassa) has advised those who have applied for the R350 social relief of distress (SRD) grant to ensure their cellphone numbers have gone through the Regulation of Interception of Communications and Provision of Communication-related Information Act (Rica) process.

The agency announced on Tuesday that applicants should make sure their cellphone numbers have gone through the process if they choose to be paid through cardless banking at an ATM.

“If they choose to be paid through their bank accounts they must ensure the bank account provided is registered in their name,” said Sassa.

October 13 2021 - 08:00

Healthcare workers burning out from Covid-19 burden

Healthcare workers are suffering mental health strain, depression and heightened anxiety brought on by the Covid-19 pandemic. 

Dr Laeeka Philander, who works in the Covid-19 high-care unit at Tygerberg Hospital in Cape Town, said he had suffered emotional trauma from treating Covid-19 patients.

“I literally cried on my way home – to work, I cried … People would die in front of you then you must just be okay. And then the next person comes in that same bed, but you haven’t even mourned that previous patient yet. It was scary. It was beyond scary,” he said.

October 13 2021 - 07:00

I’ve had my jab, so why haven’t I received my Covid-19 vaccination code?

The Gauteng health department says people who have not received their vaccination code via SMS should confirm their details with the online registration portal (EVDS) to check if they were correctly captured.

October 13 2021 - 06:30

Texas vaccine mandate ban about 'politics,' White House says

White House press secretary Jen Psaki said Texas Governor Greg Abbott's executive order barring employers and others from imposing a Covid-19 vaccine mandate was motivated by politics, not science.

October 13 2021 - 06:15

Brooklyn Nets bar Kyrie Irving over vaccination status

The Brooklyn Nets' star Kyrie Irving will not be allowed to play or practice with the team until he is ‘eligible to be a full participant,’ the NBA franchise said amid the continuing fallout over the guard's Covid-19 vaccination status.

October 13 2021 - 06:00

Moderna considers Senegal, Rwanda and South Africa for African plant site

In an interview with Reuters, Noubar Afeyan, the chairman of US drugmaker Moderna, confirmed that Senegal, Rwanda, and South Africa are three 'potential' sites for its planned vaccine plant in Africa.