South Africa hits 600,000 Covid-19 cases, but stats show virus spread has slowed
South Africa reached 600,000 confirmed cases of Covid-19 on Friday, 171 days after the first positive test in Durban on March 5.
Health minister Dr Zweli Mkhize said that there were 603,338 total cases by Friday night, an increase of 3,398 from the day before.
Mkhize also announced on Friday that more than half-a-million recoveries from the respiratory illness have been recorded.
The rate at which each 100,000 cases has been recorded is an indication that South Africa has passed the peak of its Covid-19 outbreak:
— First 100,000: 110 days;
— Second 100,000: 14 days;
— Third 100,000: 9 days;
— Fourth 100,000: 8 days;
— Fifth 100,000: 10 days; and
— Sixth 100,000: 20 days.
Gauteng remains the worst-hit province, with 203,832 confirmed infections — followed by KwaZulu-Natal (108,788 cases), the Western Cape (103,942) and the Eastern Cape (84,787).
The Northern Cape has the fewest infections, with 8,818 confirmed cases to date.
Mkhize on Friday night said SA's Covid-19 related deaths had increased to 12,843 — an increase of 225 in the past 24 hours. Of the new cases, 57 were in the Eastern Cape, 46 in Gauteng, 81 in KwaZulu-Natal, six in the Northern Cape, 10 in the North West and 25 in the Western Cape.
“The recoveries now stand at 500,102, which translates to a recovery rate of 82%," Mkhize said.
The figures are based on 3,504,507 total tests, of which 24,224 were done in the most recent 24-hour cycle.