Covid-19 update: 7,238 new cases and 31 deaths reported in SA

The National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD), a division of the National Health Laboratory Service, has reported 7,238 new cases of Covid-19 that have been identified in the past 24 hours.

This brings the total number of laboratory confirmed cases to 3,915,258. The increase represents a positive rate of 24.8%.

Most of the new cases today come from Gauteng (34%) followed by Western Cape (23%). KwaZulu-Natal accounted for 15%; Eastern Cape accounted for 10% and Free State accounted for 6%. Northern Cape accounted for 5%; The Northwest accounted for 4%; Mpumalanga accounted for 3% and Limpopo accounted for 1% of cases today.

31 deaths were also recorded and of these, 12 occurred in the past 24-48 hours. This brings total casualties to 100,898 to date.

“Due to the ongoing audit exercise by the National Department of Health (NDoH), there may be a backlog of reported Covid-19 mortality cases,” the NICD said.

24,992,827 tests were conducted in both the public and private sectors.

There has been an increase of 136 hospital admissions in the past 24 hours.

WHO authorizes the Chinese CanSinoBIO Covid-19 vaccine

On Thursday, the World Health Organization authorized the use of the single-shot Covid-19 vaccine from Chinese manufacturer CanSinoBIO, the ninth shot to get WHO green light.

WHO has granted the Emergency Use List (EUL) to the Tianjin-based company’s Convidecia vaccine as China battles a resurgence of the virus triggered by the Omicron variant.

It is the third Chinese-made vaccine approved by the WHO, after Sinovac and Sinopharm.

Convidecia was found to be 64% effective against symptomatic diseases and 92% effective against severe Covid-19, the WHO said.

“The vaccine meets WHO standards for protection against Covid-19 and … the benefits of the vaccine far outweigh the risks,” the UN health agency said in a statement.

WHO vaccine experts have recommended it for people aged 18 and over.

The jab has already been launched in China, Argentina, Chile, Malaysia, Mexico and Pakistan.

WHO has now granted EUL status to nine Covid-19 vaccines and their variants: Pfizer / BioNTech, AstraZeneca, Janssen, Moderna, Sinovac, Sinopharm, Bharat Biotech, Novavax and now CanSinoBIO.

In August, the UN health agency began reviewing mobile data on the CanSinoBIO vaccine.

WHO says EUL approval gives countries, funders, contracting agencies, and communities the confidence that the vaccine has met international standards.

READ ALSO: SAHPRA: The benefits of the J&J vaccine in preventing Covid-19 far outweigh the risks

The WHO list paves the way for countries to rapidly approve and import a vaccine for distribution, especially those without their own international standards regulator.

It also opens the door for jabs to enter the Covax global vaccine sharing facility, which aims to provide fair access to doses around the world, particularly in poorer countries.

China, the last major global economy sticking to a strict zero-Covid-19 policy, is battling an economic crisis due to prolonged virus freezes that have restricted supply chains, repressed demand and halted production.

Further reporting by the AFP