Gauteng Premier David Makhura says all the primary contacts of the nurse who tested positive for coronavirus in Diepsloot, north of Johannesburg, have been traced and tested, and their results have come back negative.
Makhura and Health MEC Bandile Masuku visited the Diepsloot Park screening and testing site on Friday.
The premier earlier announced that his administration would be ramping up screening and testing in the township following the positive case.
Makhura says more than 12 000 people have been screened so far in Diepsloot.
“Because she’s a community nurse, she had a wider network of contacts. 40 of those – the primary contacts – have been tested. And fortunately, all of them have tested negative so far. So, she is in one of our facilities in isolation getting medical attention. She’s got mild symptoms of the disease. We’re also happy that of the 1 000 tests that were carried out here, she’s the only one, our staff nurse, who tested positive.”
— David Makhura (@David_Makhura) May 7, 2020
Democratic Alliance (DA) Gauteng Shadow Health MEC Jack Bloom says he is concerned that it takes up to seven days for the test results to come back.
“I’m very concerned about getting testing results for COVID-19 in Gauteng. I think this understates the true picture. It’s very important that results are prompt because if people don’t know that they’re positive they could be spreading the infection to others. We need to react immediately to local hotspots, isolate and quarantine people and make sure that they get proper treatment, but we can’t do any of these if it takes as long as seven days to get results for a covid-19 tests.”
COVID-19 positive health workers
Health Minister Zweli Mkhize said on Wednesday that a total of 511 health workers have tested positive for the novel coronavirus in South Africa.
We have a total of 511 health workers who have tested positive. 26 of them are hospitalized & we have lost 2 of them, a doctor and a nurse. 149 health workers have recovered. The contribution of the protective gear is therefore very important.
— Dr Zweli Mkhize (@DrZweliMkhize) May 6, 2020
This as health workers continue to complain about the shortage of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). Members of Nurses Indaba Trade Union went on protest over the matter recently.
In the video below, SAMA’s Dr Angelique Coetzee talks about the rise in the number of COVID-19 positive medics: