NATIONAL NEWS - Health Minister Dr Zweli Mkhize said on Wednesday night the country has entered the second wave of the coronavirus pandemic.
The minister said 6 079 covid-19 cases were reported in the last 24 hours, with superspreader events playing a key role in this.
“If this trajectory continues our healthcare will be overwhelmed by these numbers,” said Mkhize.
Mkhize tweeted that a number of provinces were showing worrying trends.
“The age distribution has also shown a different pattern from the norm. The age group 15-19 years showed the highest number of cases over the past two days.”
He said the four provinces that were key drivers of this new wave were the Eastern Cape, the Western Cape, KwaZulu-Natal, and Gauteng.
The minister said premiers of affected provinces had been informed to prepare themselves for a second wave and address hospital capacity challenges including re-activating field hospitals.
“As we are moving around in the various provinces we are seeing that the pressure has already built up in various provinces,” he noted.
On Wednesday, Mkhize visited the Eastern Cape where the Nelson Mandela Metro has been declared a Covid-19 hotspot.
Mkhize issued a warning ahead of the festive season that irresponsible celebrations and gatherings would not be tolerated.
“If our enjoyment is going to lead to more people getting sick and being admitted to hospital and even login lives, then that is not a responsible way,” he noted.