Wednesday, 03 February 2021 23:24

Minister of Health Dr Zweli Mkhize confirmed in a statement that a total of 4 058 new Covid-19 cases have been identified in the country bringing the cumulative number of Covid-19 cases is 1 463 016.

The number of new cases rose again after 2 649 were recorded yesterday and 2 548 on Monday.

A total of 8 369 287 tests have been conducted, with 39 596 new tests recorded since the last report, said Mkhize.

A further 398 deaths were reported, with the highest number of deaths were recorded in KwaZulu-Natal (138), followed by Gauteng (97), Western Cape (67), Eastern Cape (46), Mpumalanga (21), Free State (12), Northern Cape (9) and Limpopo (8). This brings the total to 45 344 deaths.

Mkhize added that the number of recoveries now stand at 1 323 680, representing a recovery rate of 90.5%.

Meanwhile the SA Health Products Regulatory Authority (Sahpra) has warned that ivermectin is still illegal in the country for use in the treatment and prevention of Covid-19 in humans, except by approved medical practitioners.

It said there were only 10 medical practitioners approved to use the drug for Covid-19.

Addressing parliament's health portfolio committee, Sahpra warned that there was not enough scientific evidence around the use of the drug, both for safety and efficacy, to either treat or prevent Covid-19.

This comes after Sahpra's approval of the drug for controlled compassionate use for Covid-19 amid a legal battle with AfriForum, a doctor and two of his patients at the North Gauteng High Court.

South Africa will be receiving a disproportionately high number of Covid-19 vaccines made by Pfizer – which demands ultra-low temperatures – numbers released by Covax on Wednesday show.

More than half of all the early Pfizer doses the initiative intends to distribute in Africa will be headed for South Africa.

Overall, SA's share of Covax vaccines stands at 1%, according to an early forecast, but its share of the Pfizer allocation is at 10%.

Compiled by Lehlohonolo Lehana.