The Gauteng Health Department says one of the persons that has tested positive for the coronavirus in the province is in a serious condition.

The patient is among the four cases in the province. South Africa has 13 positive cases of the virus.

Six new cases were confirmed on Wednesday, with one in KwaZulu-Natal and another in the Western Cape.

However, Gauteng MEC for Health Bandile Masuku says they have confidence in health professionals.

Masuku says, “One of them is a 57-year-old with a renal disease which we are worried about because those are two factors which usually give us a severe pattern of the disease that we have seen. We are quite confident with our staff and everybody who has been working throughout, from the tracing teams to trace the contacts of the patients we are dealing with.”

Below is a video mapping the coronavirus footprint in Africa:

Self-quarantine

The head of Infectious Diseases at Tygerberg Hospital and Stellenbosch University, Professor Jantjie Taljaard say patients who are allowed to be in self-quarantine at home after testing positive for the coronavirus, go through a rigorous process.

The first confirmed coronavirus patient in Cape Town is self-quarantined at home.

Tygerberg Hospital is one of the designated facilities for the isolation and treatment of COVID-19 patients in the Western Cape.

Taljaard says people with confirmed cases and choose home quarantine, go through intense discussions with doctors before a decision is made.

He says, “We would have a discussion, discuss their home situation, discuss their abilities to understand what we’re telling them, and we will decide together with the patient if they can go home and self-isolate. There’s a good guideline that we give them of what to do at home, there’s also a video that we show them with examples of what can be done at home, so it’s a collective decision between the clinic and the patient whether it can be done safely at home.”

In the video below, SABC reporter Vanessa Poonah has more on the Western Cape coronavirus patient in self-isolation:

Coronavirus outbreak is a pandemic

The Health Department says the World Health Organisation’s declaration of the coronavirus outbreak as a pandemic comes as no surprise.

The Department says South Africa will have to increase its alert for the coronavirus. It says countries will have to take extreme measures to prevent its further spread.

The term pandemic relates to a geographic spread and is used to describe a disease that affects a whole country or the entire world.

More than 121 500 people have been infected by the coronavirus across the world and 4383 have died.

The Department’s Deputy Director-General Doctor Yogan Pillay says, “It’s something we’ve been expecting as the numbers of people who are diagnosed positive increased especially across Europe. The number of fatalities have increased which means that all countries need to be on increased alert and learn really from China, who’ve been able to roll back the numbers of cases diagnosed as well as the mortality in the last week or so.”

Below is the video of the WHO declaring coronavirus a pandemic: 

Infographic of coronavirus cases in SA:

 

Additional reporting by Thandiswa Mawu and Thabile Mbhele.