KZN may already be in third wave: study

KZN may already be in third wave: study

KwaZulu-Natal may already be in the grip of a third wave of Covid-19 infections. 

COVID-19 test

This is according to the Durban University of Technology's (DUT) Institute of Water and Wastewater Technology. 

The team has been analysing the viral loads from eThekwini's Central Wastewater Treatment Plant. 

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Team leader, Professor Faizal Bux, says according to their measurements, viral loads increased drastically in the past four weeks. 

These levels were higher than those observed during the peak of the second wave. 

Bux says as a metro, eThekwini is a good reflection of the pandemic trend in KZN.

"If you look at the clinical cases that have been reported in the Durban area there was an increase in clinical cases reported from around the 20th of April. 

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"But, we have actually found that the increase in waste water was noted around the 30th of March, so this is a bit of a concern and clearly this approach can be used as an early warning system." 

Viral loads averaged at 5.57 log copies per 100 ml of wastewater, which was far higher than what was observed during the peak of the second wave.

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