The National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD), a division of the National Health Laboratory Service, continues to receive samples of COVID-19 suspected cases and has been following up on all possible leads to track down COVID-19 cases reported in the country. We confirm that, as of 14 March 2020, 14 new imported COVID-19 cases have tested positive for SARS-CoV-2, bringing the total number of COVID-19 positive cases to 38.
The 14 newly added cases are spread across four provinces, Gauteng Province being the most affected to date. In Gauteng Province, a 72-year-old female travelled to the United States of America and the United Kingdom, a 76-year-old male travelled to the United States of America and the United Kingdom, a 52-year old male travelled to Germany, a 38-year-old male travelled to Switzerland and Germany, a 47-year-old male travelled to Switzerland, a 33-year-old female travelled to France, and a 27-year-old male is with pending travel history. In the Western Cape Province, a 47-year-old male travelled to the United States of America and the United Kingdom, a 62-year-old male travelled to the Netherlands, a 19-year-old female travelled to France and Italy, a 14-year-old female travelled to the United States of America and Dubai, a 73-year-old male travelled to the United Kingdom and a 32-year-old male travelled to the United Kingdom. Only one additional case was identified for the KwaZulu-Natal Province, a 49-year-old male who travelled to France and Italy. Contact tracing of all possible contacts that the patients may have come into contact with is underway.
The total provincial break down of COVID-19 cases to date is as follows:
- Gauteng: 17
- KwaZulu-Natal: 11
- Western Cape: 9
- Mpumalanga: 1
In our efforts to expand and streamline testing for COVID-19, we have decided that doctors do not need to contact the NICD for approval as long as they apply the case definition before testing. The NICD will test the submitted samples as long as the required supporting documents accompany the sample (specimen submission form and PUI form) which is available on the NICD website: nicd.ac.za.