Inside Covid-19: Interview with Dr Anthony Fauci; Two perspectives on Ramaphosa’s Booze Ban shock. Ep 59

In Episode 59 of Inside Covid-19, we package highlights from some of today’s top virus-related interviews that have relevance to South Africa headlined by a fascinating discussion with the US’s coronavirus doctor Anthony Fauci. There are two perspectives on last night’s controversial new regulations imposed by SA president Cyril Ramaphosa – researchers Ask Afrika and the man representing 35,000 licenced taverners. And we take a look at the excruciating choice for parents on whether to send their children back to school. – Alec Hogg

In today’s Covid-19 headlines:

  • South Africa’s mortalities passed the 4,000 mark on Sunday, the eighth successive day of more than 100 deaths. Although daily infections have been rising by among the highest in the world, total mortalities are relatively modest by comparison, ranking 23rd of all countries and a fraction of the 138,000 American and 72,000 Brazilian mortalities. South Africa’s confirmed infections, however are now above 275,000, the 10th highest of any country. Differences of opinion rage around the likely final mortality count. President Cyril Ramaphosa told the nation Sunday night that the government’s modellers anticipate between 40,000 and 50,000 deaths by the end of the year. Nick Hudson, coordinator of Panda, an independent group of actuaries, says there is nothing in the data to suggest they should change a long-held projection of 10,000 mortalities.
  • President Ramaphosa’s new regulations announced on Sunday included the immediate banning of alcohol sales and the imposition of a national curfew from 9pm to 4am. On the other hand, taxis are allowed to increase their loads to 100% and while citizens are prevented from visiting family, they are allowed to attend church and funeral gatherings of up to 50 people. The regulations have received widespread criticism, especially from the liquor trade.
  • While South Africa is in the middle of its own pandemic storm, new coronavirus cases in the US state of Florida topped 15,000 yesterday, the largest one day increase for any one of America’s 50 states. More than half of the states are now reporting steady increases in daily cases with near records in highly populated California and Texas. On the upside, SA can learn from lessons learnt in the US over the past four months as we’ll hear in the interview coming up with Dr Anthony Fauci who is leading the White House’s Covid-19 task team.