Nicola Spurrier: South Africa’s chief health officer tested positive for Covid

South Australia’s Chief Medical Officer Nicola Spurrier has tested positive for Covid, just amid a surge in cases and hospitalizations.

Health officials warned on Tuesday that the number of hospitalizations would increase in the coming weeks.

“Professor Spurrier will perform his duties as Chief Medical Officer from home until the end of the lockdown period,” SA Health said in a statement.

“She would like to highlight the importance of everyone getting tested for Covid, even with the most minimal symptoms, and encourages the wearing of masks to prevent unknowing transmission of the infection.”

Professor Spurrier received her fourth dose of the vaccine last week and is known to be experiencing very mild symptoms.

University of Adelaide modeling predicts hospitalizations could rise to 400 this week as daily cases top 7,000.

As of Tuesday, there were 282 people in hospitals with the virus across the state.

“We are currently seeing a medium upward trajectory of hospital admissions,” South African Health Minister Chris Pickton said.

“This clearly indicates pressure on our healthcare system to make sure we find affordable options in our system for people who need hospitalization due to Covid.”

On Tuesday, the SA reported 4,172 new infections, as well as three deaths – a woman in her 50s, another in her 80s and a man in his 70s.

Mr Picton said some non-urgent nightly elective surgeries at public hospitals could be delayed or moved to private hospitals to find beds for Covid-19 patients.

Originally published as Chief Medical Officer of South Australia shares sad news