Inside Covid-19: SA link in AI model to help fight virus; Lessons from the US’s record setting second wave. Ep 54

In Episode 54 of Inside Covid-19, some expert insight (and good news) as SA hits number five among the world’s new daily infection table; a global South African tech guru breaks new ground on the coronavirus with an agent-based artificial intelligence model; there’s bad news for restaurant owners worldwide as at least 25% are expected to never re-open; and another brilliant investigation by our partners at the Wall Street Journal – this time into why infections in the hard-hit USA are back at new record levels – and what other countries like South Africa can learn from it. – Alec Hogg

In today’s Covid-19 headlines:

  • With new infections having established a daily base of over 6,000, South Africa is now entrenched in the global top five on new coronavirus infections. Although down on Saturday’s peak of over 7,000, Monday’s 6,130 new cases took the country’s total infections to more than 144,000. A further 73 deaths pushed the total over 2,500.
  • Globally, total infections are now 10.5m with deaths of 510,000. A second wave in the USA has taken new infections to a fresh peak of 47,000 last Friday. Monday’s 44,700 new infections was the second highest of any one day total cases now over 2.7m and mortalities at 130000.
  • Some good news from a Johannesburg company as a home grown Covid-19 testing kit promises to step into one of South Africa’s biggest gaps in the national fight against the virus.
  • One of US president Donald Trump’s favourite anti-coronavirus drugs, hydroxochloroquine, is finding some favour again. In spite of findings published two months ago in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), that hydroxychloroquine, when used to treat Covid-19, caused cardiac arrhythmias, a major global trial of the drug is about to resume. British regulators have approved the resumption of the so-called COPCOV trial involving 40,000 healthcare and other at-risk workers. The stop-start trial, the biggest and therefore the most important, was halted when inconclusive or red-flag results from smaller-scale trials left regulators in the UK and the USA nervous. You’ll find more about this story on