South Africa’s COVID-19 resurgence, centered in Johannesburg and driven by the delta variant, sets a record number of new daily cases, health officials said on Sunday.
More than 26,000 new cases were reported on Saturday, up from 24,000 the day before, according to the National Institute of Communicable Diseases, surpassing the country’s highest number of new cases in previous waves and quickly bringing many hospitals to capacity.
More than 13,800 COVID-19 patients are currently in South African hospitals where some facilities are canceling elective surgeries to free up beds and health workers.
The official death toll in South Africa has exceeded 63,000, although statistics on excessive deaths suggest the actual number of deaths from the virus in the country could exceed 170,000.
WATCH | “Alarming” increase in COVID-19 in some African countries, according to WHO:
The two million cases in South Africa represent more than 30% of the cases reported by Africafrom 54 countries, according to the African Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
South African President Cyril Ramaphosa last week tightened restrictions in an attempt to curb the spread of the virus, including extending a nighttime curfew, banning the sale of alcohol, closing many schools and shutting down schools. trips to and from Gauteng – the country’s most populous province which includes Johannesburg and the capital, Pretoria.
Gauteng accounts for more than 60% of new cases and authorities fear other provinces and cities will follow soon.
After a slow start, South Africa’s vaccination campaign is gaining momentum but still lagging far behind developed countries. To date, more than 3.3 million of South Africa’s 60 million people have received at least one Pfizer or Johnson & Johnson vaccine.
The vaccination campaign has started with health workers, people aged 60 and over and teachers. On Mondays, the police can be hit and soon 50 and over can too.
The National Health Products Regulatory Authority on Saturday cleared the vaccine made by Chinese company Sinovac, on condition that it submits the final results of ongoing clinical studies.
Neighboring countries, including Mozambique, Namibia, Zambia and Zimbabwe, are also struggling to cope with a wave of infections.
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What’s happening across Canada
As of 3:45 p.m. ET Sunday, Canada had reported 1,416,969 confirmed cases of COVID-19, of which 6,159 were considered active. A CBC News death tally stood at 26,360. More than 38 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine have been administered across the country to date.
In British Columbia, 78.5% of eligible residents received their first injection of COVID-19 vaccine. About 33 percent of eligible people received a second dose.
In AlbertaCalgary City Council will reassess the city’s mask mandate on Monday. The decision will be based on parameters such as the number of second doses given and the rate of infection.
In June, the council voted 8-6 to extend the measure until July 5 in Calgary. The provincial government lifted its mask mandate for Alberta on July 1.
WATCH | Alberta drops most COVID-19 restrictions, including mask mandate:
Manitoba recorded 64 new cases of COVID-19 on Sunday, as the number of deaths in the province linked to the disease increased by two, and Saskatchewan reported 27 new cases and no deaths.
Ontario Connected 213 new cases and nine additional deaths.
Starting Monday at 8 a.m., residents 12 to 17 years of age will be able to make an appointment to receive their second dose of Pfizer through the provincial reservation system. They should wait 28 days between doses, as recommended by the Ontario Ministry of Health.
In Quebec, Gisèle Levesque, the first person in Canada to receive a COVID-19 vaccine, has died. The 89-year-old man died peacefully from natural causes on June 28, surrounded by his family, according to the Quebec public health authority.
In a statement, the health authority said his death was unrelated to COVID-19.
Lévesque received the first dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine on December 14 at CHSLD St-Antoine, a long-term care home in Quebec.
In the Atlantic provinces, New Scotland, which confirmed three new cases on Sunday, says international travelers may resume entering the province on Monday; New Brunswick saw one new infection and one additional death; and in Prince Edward Island, more than 82 percent of eligible residents received their first dose of vaccine, with just under 24 percent fully immunized.
In the Northwest Territories, mask requirements and appointments at many Yellowknife institutions – like the public library and swimming pools – will be lifted on Monday.
What is happening in the world
As of Sunday, more than 183.5 million cases of COVID-19 had been reported worldwide, according to data released by Johns Hopkins University in the United States. The death toll worldwide was over 3.9 million.
In Asia, Indonesia requires foreign visitors to be fully vaccinated as one of the entry requirements.
In Europe, Russia reported more than 25,000 new cases of coronavirus infection on Sunday, the highest number since January, as the country faces a sharp increase in the past month.
In the AmericasDr Anthony Fauci – the leading infectious disease expert in the United States – says that about 99.2% of recent deaths from COVID-19 in the United States involved unvaccinated people.
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