Health Minister Zweli Mkhize has announced that there are now 202 confirmed cases of the COVID-19 coronavirus in South Africa.
Speaking at a media briefing in Bloemfontein, Mkhize said that the Free State and Limpopo have confirmed their first cases.
The National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD) has also confirmed that the Free State province has reflected its first positive case of COVID-19.
“The patients are being informed as we speak, some have already been taken into quarantine by the provincial government.”
Between 60% and 70% exposed
Mkhize said this morning that between 60% and 70% of South Africans are likely to be affected by the COVID-19 coronavirus.
Speaking at a media briefing in Pretoria, Mkhize added that while most South Africans will get the virus, only about 20% will be seriously ill.
“We are in a battle now,” Mkhize said. “This enemy is rapidly spreading and we must mobilise our forces to target this.”
“We want to make sure that we reduce the fatalities, we can’t just have these numbers rising uncontrollably.”
Mkhize said that the government needs to increase its presence and testing footprint in poorer areas, stating that currently, there is a “no symptoms, no testing” policy in place.