Johannesburg - Health Minister Joe Phaahla said on Friday Gauteng has exited the 4th wave of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Phaahla said in the first week of January there were 46 680 cases compared to the last week of 2021 when there were 54 191 new cases.
“Gauteng province has officially exited the 4th wave in terms of the technical definition of a wave, we can now say officially that Gauteng has technically exited the 4th wave this week while all other eight provinces have reached their peaks and are now on a decline,” he said.
Phaahla said in the past week it was the Western Cape which had the highest number of new cases, followed by KwaZulu-Natal and the Gauteng province while all other provinces accounted for only 11% of new cases.
“There has been a 4.8%, almost a 5%, reduction in reported deaths over the last seven days.
“As of January 13 there has been a 27% reduction in new cases compared to seven days before on a national scale and the reduction was in all provinces in terms of new cases,” Phaahla said.
He reported that therewas a 6.3% decrease in hospitalisations compared to seven days earlier, even though three provinces, Mpumalanga, Northern Cape and Western Cape did report some small increases in their regions.
Phaahla said the overall hospitalisations were much lower during the 4th wave compared to the previous three waves.
“The national recovery rate, also very encouraging, now stands at 94% and the current active cases as of yesterday (January 13) are 106 883 which is 22.7% reduction of active cases compared to 24 hours earlier.
“The positivity rate of tests has gone down from the highs of 25% to 30% in the middle of December and as of yesterday this has gone down to 14%, which is still high because we want to get down to less than 5% which will indicate stability,” Phaahla said.
He said the Omicron variant had since been discovered in 149 countries compared to the 76 countries it had been discovered when the Department of Health last briefed the country on December 17 last year.