Informal settlement de-densification, a mass rollout of water tanks, an increase in social services and local manufacturing of the chemical reagents needed for Covid-19 tests - these are some of the plans the government has to protect SA's most vulnerable from the Covid-19 outbreak and the effects of the lockdown.
The South African government is working with the institutions to start locally producing the reagents needed for Covid-19 tests, Higher Education, Science and Technology Minister Blade Nzimande announced on Tuesday.
Nzimande said his department was in discussion with three institutions - Biovac, the Centre of Excellence for Biomedical TB Research and Afrigen Bio - to repurpose facilities and labs to start producing the reagents locally.
The global Covid-19 pandemic has caused a shortage of reagents and South Africa currently relies on imports. The government plans to significantly increase Covid-19 testing during the 21-day lockdown, announced by President Cyril Ramaphosa on Monday evening.
"It has become very urgent to locally manufacture reagents for testing kits. These are currently being imported and the lockdown may threaten access to supply," said Nzimande.
"Once we are able to establish how long the supplies will run out that we currently have, we can be able...
Source: Daily Maverick