Health Minister Dr Zweli Mkhize says the number of COVID-19 cases in South Africa has increased by 3 147 to 58 568. That’s an increase of almost 6%. A total of 33 252 recoveries have been reported. The number of fatalities is expected to be released later on Thursday.

The death toll from the virus now stands at 1284, with 74 new deaths confirmed in the last 24 hours.

The Western Cape still has the most cases with 37 422 positive tests reported.

The Health Department says they have reached a milestone of over 0ne million tests.

“Today we have reached the landmark of one million tests that have been done in the whole country both in private and public facilities. There have been increases in the numbers of people who are positive and in the whole country. And you’ll notice that in some provinces there are increases like the Western Cape has well over 1 000 and now we have others increasing by larger numbers so the total number that is reported today is 58 568,” says the Health Minister.

The department paid tribute to all the technicians and pathologists in the NHLS and private laboratories and all the staff who work in the riskiest environment, 24 hours a day, to churn out the results.

South Africa was one of the first countries to do community screening and testing.

“I would also like to thank the drivers from NHLS, who have been responsible for getting all 67 mobile units to all the districts and who continue to move vehicles between provinces to areas of greatest need,” says  Mkhize.

“I would also like to thank the labs for the hard work that is being done now to clear the backlog and improve turnaround times for processing of specimens.”

1 028 399 tests have been done cumulatively of which 29 999 were conducted since the last report.

In the video below, Minister Mkhize monitors Eastern Cape’s response to COVID-19:

As of today, the cumulative number of confirmed #COVID19 cases is 58 568, the total number of recoveries to date are 33 252 and we have reached a milestone in testing,1 028 399 tests have been conducted cumulatively.

Minister Mkhize has also called for the protection of the elderly and people with comorbidities.