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Covid: South Africa backpedals on the end of contact tracing for asympotamic cases

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South Africa

On Tuesday, South Africa’s government reintroduced contact tracing for asymptomatic individuals who had met with a Covid-19 positive person.

Less than a week after a change in Covid-19 isolation rules, South Africa announced on Tuesday it would go back to its former regulations.

"The department has decided to put the implementation of the revised policy changes on hold, meaning all prior existing regulations with regards to contact tracing, quarantine and isolation remain applicable", the Department of Health wrote in a statement.

Its previous decision suggested that asymptomatic people who had been in contact with a case of COVID-19 no longer needed self-isolation. It was motivated by "scientific factors including the fact that, most people have vaccinated with at least one vaccine dose and developed some level of immunity".

However, faced with media, stakeholders and public enquiries, the department has finaly decided to put on hold the revised policy changes.

South Africa is the country the most severely hit by the Covid outbreak on the continent. As of today, 3.4 million cases have been confirmed and more than 90.000 people have died with Covid.

The department sincerely apologised for any confusion and inconvenience caused.

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