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A total of 7 132 public healthcare workers in KwaZulu-Natal have been infected with Covid-19 since the start of the pandemic, while 88 have succumbed to the virus

The majority of the infected healthcare workers were nurses.

KZN Premier Sihle Zikalala said no new healthcare infections or deaths have been reported as of 27 November.

Zikalala said the province has now recorded a total of 127 506 Covid–19 cases, with 6 212 still active.

“Sadly, we have lost 3 340 people, while thankfully 117 964 have recovered. As the province, we are currently ranked the third highest countrywide, after Gauteng and the Western Cape, in terms of laboratory-confirmed cases. We are ranked at number four after Gauteng, Western Cape and the Eastern Cape in terms of Covid–19 fatalities.

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“We are extremely concerned about the increase in the number of new cases in the province over the past four weeks. We are currently in week 48 of the year 2020. Over the past week, the figures have jumped substantially to 1 652,” said Zikalala.

“Over the past week, the highest number of cases received on each day was 345 on 27 November 2020. As of 28 November, we had 287 new cases and no deaths. The eThekwini metro has continued to record the highest number of new cases daily and contributed approximately half of the total laboratory confirmed cases provincially.

“The number of deaths reported in the province has been declining in the past four weeks. The case fatality rate, therefore, remains at 2.6% and the mortality rate was 30 deaths per 100 000 population. Amajuba and eThekwini districts have the highest mortality rate, at 42 deaths per 100 000,” said Zikalala.

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Zikalala promised that the province is monitoring resurgence indicators very closely and has not reached the resurgence threshold.

“These indicators are monitored daily and, if the resurgence indicators are triggered, the Provincial Resurgence Plan will be implemented. The province decommissioned the Royal Showgrounds Field Hospital in Pietermaritzburg. However, we must point out that, if the need arises, we have the capacity to activate beds that were used during first wave.

“The [health] department has submitted a request to extend the contracts of the staff who were recruited for Covid-19 until March 2021. The resurgence plan has been developed and is underpinned by the basic actions that should be carried out when responding to the possible resurgence,” Zikalala said.

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