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South Africa reports record daily increase in COVID-19


A health department official walks past beds set up at a temporary field hospital up to deal with an expected surge in cases of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) at the Cape Town International Convention Centre in Cape Town, South Africa May 26, 2020. REUTERS/Mike Hutchings/File Photo

South Africa has reported 8,124 new COVID-19 cases in the past 24 hours, the highest single-day surge since the outbreak in early March, bringing its national total to 159,333, Health Minister Zweli Mkhize said Wednesday.

“Regrettably, we report a further 92 COVID-19 related deaths — 17 from Eastern Cape, 28 from Gauteng, 10 from KwaZulu Natal and 37 from Western Cape. This brings the total deaths to 2,749,” Mkhize added.

The mortality rate is 1.7 percent, while the recovery rate stands at 47.7 percent as a total of 76,025 recoveries have so far been reported, the minister said.

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The Western Cape province remained the epicenter of the national outbreak with 64,377 cases, followed by Gauteng with 45,944 and Eastern Cape with 29,340.

So far, South Africa is far ahead of other African countries in terms of confirmed cases, comprising almost half of the total infections on the African continent, which has recorded 383,747 cases as of Wednesday, according to the Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The rapid rise in the country’s confirmed cases is partly attributed to its massive community testing.

Currently South Africa conducts more than 30,000 tests daily.

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In the past 24 hours, the country has conducted 36,931 new tests, bringing its total to 1,666,939, Mkhize said.

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