5 dead as coronavirus cases in South Africa rise to 1,380

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Minister of Health, Dr Zweli Mkhize, will be launching and showcasing these mobile testing units at the National Health Laboratory Service.

Health Minister Zweli Mkhize has on Wednesday announced that there are currently a total of 1,380 cases in the country, an increase of 27 from Tuesday's figure.

He has been addressing the media after launching the mobile sampling and testing units in Sandringham, Johannesburg.

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The number of deaths and recoveries remain at five and 31 respectively.

The minister said government measures put in place to stop the spread of the virus were yielding positive results.

"I ascribe this reduction in the rate of increase to closing the borders, enforcing quarantine on inbound travelers, the lockdown has also slowed internal transmission by reducing the spread during large gatherings and overcrowded transport routes."

He said the number of people tested across the country so far was about 45,000.

"Those people who might have mild symptoms in poorer areas may not seek assistance immediately. Our testing criteria is reactive and restrictive. This means we don’t have a true picture. Although we are talking about 45,000 tests, this is too low, given the size of the population."

Mkhize also said he tested negative for COVID-19: "I have had all sorts of asthma and sinus issues for a long time. I have tested for COVID-19 and I am negative. Air conditioners also aggravate the cough."

Earlier, he launched and showcased these mobile testing units at the National Health Laboratory Service.

WATCH LIVE: Minister Mkhize on COVID-19 cases in SA

-EWN


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