South African Covid-19 cases reach 6,336 with 732 in the Eastern Cape

Demographic information released for the first time shows that 58% of the 123 South Africans killed by Covid-19 are men.

The biggest group of people to have died are in the 60-69 age group, health minister Zweli Mkhize said on Saturday.

This age group accounted for 24.4% of the deaths so far, with the 70-79 age group next, at 22.7%.

Mkhize said an analysis of hospitalised patients showed that “consistent with evidence emerging worldwide, hypertension, diabetes and cardiac disease are the three most common comorbidities associated with serious illness from Covid-19″.

Announcing 385 new confirmed cases of Covid-19, bringing the total to 6,336 since the first case on March 5, Mkhize said other comorbidities recorded were chronic pulmonary disease, asthma, chronic renal disease, cancer, HIV and tuberculosis (both active and historical).

“I would therefore like to urge our millions of South Africans who are over 63 years of age and those who live with these conditions to take extra precautions as we ease the lockdown,” said Mkhize.

The Western Cape, with 2,700 confirmed coronavirus cases, now accounts for 42% of the national total.

Gauteng has 1,598 cases, KwaZulu-Natal 1,051, the Eastern Cape 732, the Free State 121, Mpumalanga 40, Limpopo 36, North West 35 and the Northern Cape 23.

Mkhize said the 13,164 tests conducted in the past 24 hours had set a new record, and took the total to 230,686.

The seven new deaths on Saturday were in the Western Cape (new total 123) and Free State (6), he said. KZN has had 34 deaths, the Eastern Cape 13, Gauteng 12 and Limpopo 2.

The youngest person to die was in the 20-29 age group, and two of the dead were between 90 and 99. Other age groups where fatalities have occurred are: 30-39, 6; 40-49, 19; 50-59, 23; and 80-89, 14.

By Dave Chambers 

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