Expert agrees with COVID-19 Committee’s recommendation on contact tracing

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Medical expert, Prof. Ramneeek Ahluwalia says he agrees with the Ministerial Advisory Committee (MAC) on COVID-19 that contact tracing and quarantine for people who have been in close contact with those who have coronavirus is no longer necessary, and should be halted with immediate effect.

The Committee has written to Health Minister Joe Phaahla, recommending that the quarantining of contacts be stopped as it is no longer viable in the current social and economic climate.

Ahluwalia says there are a number of preventative measures in place and the infection symptoms are getting milder.

He says, “Natural immunity is there, vaccine immunity is being jagged up, we’re seeing milder infections all around us and one thing is also becoming clearer that your PCR test, as well as you becoming able to spread the virus only start about a day or two before your first sick big symptoms start coming in.”

“So it’s not fair to be isolating and business to be kept aloof because people are absolutely going into isolation, otherwise who will produce into our economic conditions,” Ahluwalia adds.

In the video below, Ahluwalia is interviewed on Morning Live:

Severe disease

The number of children admitted to paediatric units of various health facilities with COVID-19 is gradually going down.

Despite making up 30% of the population, younger people comprise only 12% of COVID cases and 5% of hospital admissions.

According to the Health Department, children at the risk of severe disease are those under one year and people with other comorbidities.

The admission of children with COVID-19 at various health facilities has raised questions about whether children should be vaccinated against COVID or not. There’s currently no vaccine approved for children under the age of 12 in South Africa.

Paediatrics Unit Professor Jeané Cloete at the Steve Biko Academic Hospital in Pretoria says, “Should the children be vaccinated? If the child is older than 12 and eligible for vaccination –  yes, we should take the child to be vaccinated. It is the only way we can protect them against the virus. For children younger than 12, vaccination is not available for children 5 to 12. Although it is approved overseas. It will have to be approved by SAPHRA first before we can vaccinate children in those age groups.”

Latest COVID-19 Stats in SA: