The National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD) says less children who have been affected by COVID-19 have been hospitalised.
The NICD says 9% of children have tested positive for coronavirus since the beginning of the year.
It says cases are five times lower than in adults.
Epidemiologist, Tendesayi Kufa-Chakezha, says data does not show whether infants who are admitted to hospital and die later, pass on due to COVID-19-related complications.
“Most of the children that get COVID-19 or test positive for COVID-19 have mild symptoms that don’t require them to be admitted in hospital. This is the major limitation of our data. We don’t always know why these infants are admitted because the data that we get is reported to us,” she says.
“Hospitals fill in an electronic form and they summit the data to NICD for every COVID-19 admission they get. The data that comes through to us [and it] doesn’t always say if the death was not related to COVID-19 or if it was related to COVID-19,” explains Dr Kufa-Chakezha.
COVID-19 in Children report under spotlight:
The NICD report comes amid concerns over the upcoming return of children to school.
Primary school learners are set to resume daily class attendance from July 26, as parts of South Africa battles a third wave of COVID-19 infections.
While the Educators’ Union of South Africa has dismissed the decision as reckless, the country’s biggest teacher union, Sadtu, says it will review the situation as it observes the third wave.