South Africa has found about 4,000 Covid-19 re-infections

A health worker receives a dose of Johnson & Johnson's coronavirus vaccine in Umlazi, south of Durban, on Feb 18, 2021. PHOTO: AFP

JOHANNESBURG (BLOOMBERG) - About 4,000 cases of re-infection with Covid-19 have been found in South Africa, Barry Schoub, the chair of the country's Ministerial Advisory Committee on Vaccines, said.

"This is probably to a large extent due to the variant" of the virus that was first identified in the country, he said on a webinar on Wednesday (Feb 24).

The mutation, known by scientists as B.1.351, was identified in the country last last year and has become the dominant strain in the nation.

With over 1.5 million known coronavirus infections and almost 50,000 deaths, South Africa has been the hardest hit country on the continent.

On Thursday, the South African government will release the results of a study into the transmissibility of the variant, whether it can cause re-infection and whether it causes more severe disease.

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