COVID-19: South Africa nears 30 000 cases as Mkhize reports 34 new deaths

Health Minister Zweli Mkhize briefed the media on Friday evening, 29 May 2020 regarding lockdown level three, and released the current COVID-19 figures as well.

Minister Mkhize was joined by members of the Ministerial Advisory Committee, senior officials from the Department of Health and the leadership of Health Entities, as well as SAHPRA, NHLS, and NICD.

COVID-19 update: Friday, 29 May 2020

The Health Ministry announced that the number of COVID-19 cases in South Africa had increased by 1 837 since Thursday 28 May, bringing the total cumulative caseload to 29 240.

Deaths also increased by 59; the total number of COVID-19-related deaths now stands at 611. In addition, 15 093 people have recovered from the virus. Health Minister Zweli Mkhize said during the briefing:

"Our infection rose from imported cases and we had to impose a lockdown immediately. Now other issues have risen, and we need to consider these important issues as we move to a new reality".

Breakdown of new confirmed COVID-19 cases

New cases, deaths and recoveries by province

The confirmed COVID-19 cases per province is as follows:

ProvinceTotal CasesNew CasesTotal DeathsTotal Recoveries
Gauteng3 583254312 019
Western Cape18 9061 1524379 390
KwaZulu Natal2 42879501 180
Free State23168124
Eastern Cape3 583277801 700
North West1439145
Northern Cape521131

Tests and screening

On Thursday evening, Minister Mkhize also addressed the backlog of more than 96 000 unprocessed COVID-19 tests. He explained that limited availability of kits poses a challenge. As of today:

  1. A total of 680 175 tests have been conducted, of which 24 452 were done in the last 24 hours.

  2. The total number of tests conducted in the private sector stands at 335 834, of which 13 555 were done in the last 24 hours.[*]In addition, 344 341 tests were conducted in the public sector, with 10 897 being done within the last 24 hours.

Also read – Mkhize cites backlog of over 96 000 COVID-19 tests

Global statistics

Confirmed global cases stand at 5 971 159 and 364 301 deaths. More than 2 629 624 people have recovered from the virus, which was declared as a worldwide pandemic in January 2020.

The USA currently has the most cases – 1 777 821 confirmed cases and 103 822 confirmed deaths; a total of 502 116 citizens have recovered and more than 16 million have been tested.

Out of America's 1 171 883 active cases, 17 161 are critical. Brazil is still the second most-affected country 443 542 confirmed cases and 26 899 deaths. In addition, 193 181 patients have recovered