COVID Series

COVID-19 response in South African communities: Screening, testing, tracing and movement modelling

M Modisenyane, L Madikezela, S Mngemane, O P Ramadan, M Matlala, K McCarthy, N Govender, T Nemungadi, S P Silal

Abstract


In South Africa (SA), the first case of COVID-19 was reported on 5 March 2020 from a traveller who had returned from Italy. Increases in COVID-19 cases and deaths necessitated the design and implementation of community screening, testing, and tracing as a control strategy. The SA government’s plans to implement community-based screening, testing, contact tracing and movement modelling during the early phases of the COVID-19 pandemic presented both opportunities and challenges. In this article, we present our experiences, opportunities and lessons for community-based COVID-19 response, anchoring these efforts in the primary healthcare system.


Authors' affiliations

M Modisenyane, South African National Department of Health, Pretoria, South Africa

L Madikezela, South African National Department of Health, Pretoria, South Africa

S Mngemane, Clinton Health Access Initiative, Pretoria, South Africa

O P Ramadan, World Health Organization, Nairobi, Kenya

M Matlala, Clinton Health Access Initiative, Pretoria, South Africa

K McCarthy, National Institute for Communicable Diseases, a Division of the National Health Laboratory Service, Sandringham, Johannesburg, South Africa

N Govender, National Institute for Communicable Diseases, a Division of the National Health Laboratory Service, Sandringham, Johannesburg, South Africa

T Nemungadi, South African National Department of Health, Pretoria, South Africa

S P Silal, Modelling and Simulation Hub, Africa (MASHA), Department of Statistical Sciences, University of Cape Town, South Africa; Nuffield Department of Medicine, Centre for Global Health and Tropical Medicine, Oxford University, UK

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Cite this article

South African Medical Journal 2022;112(5b):366.

Article History

Date submitted: 2022-05-31
Date published: 2022-05-31

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