Minister of Health extends public comment period for health regulations in South Africa – SABC News
Health Minister Dr. Joe Phaahla has extended the public comment period on health regulations relating to the surveillance and monitoring of reportable medical conditions; Public measures at points of entry; Management of human remains and environmental health for three months starting Thursday, May 5, 2022.
The new closing date for submitting comments is July 5, 2022, and this extension is consistent with legal requirements and will provide the department with sufficient time to review and consider all regulatory comments and representations.
Comments should be sent only to this email: [email protected] no later than the expiration of a period of three (3) months from the date of publication.
All members of the public who submitted comments during the initial public comment process do not need to resubmit those comments, as all comments already submitted will be considered as part of this process.
In order to ensure that there is no gap in terms of legal instruments to contain the spread of COVID-19 and future reportable medical conditions, the department has published in the Official Gazette the limited regulations to be put in place. implemented as of Thursday, May 05, 2022.
These regulations mainly relate to the wearing of face masks, gatherings and people entering the country.
Regarding the wearing of the face mask, a person must, when entering and being inside an indoor public place, wear a face mask.
This does not apply to children in school. Again, under these limited regulations, no one can use any form of public transport unless they are wearing a face mask.
Gatherings are more clearly defined as a planned assembly or meeting in a particular place involving more than one hundred people.
For all indoor and outdoor gatherings, a maximum of 50% of the site’s capacity may be occupied provided that each participant is vaccinated against COVID-19 and produces a valid vaccination certificate.
Alternatively, attendees must produce a valid negative COVID-19 test result no more than 72 hours prior to the date of the gathering.
If it is not possible to comply with this indoor gathering requirement, attendance should be limited to 1,000 people or 50% of capacity, whichever is lower, while attendance at an indoor gathering outdoors should be limited to 2,000 people or 50% capacity, whichever is smaller.
All international travelers arriving at South African ports of entry must be vaccinated against COVID-19 and produce a valid vaccination certificate; or produce a valid negative COVID-19 PCR test result no more than 72 hours prior to departure date.
Alternatively, travelers have another option to produce a valid negative COVID-19 antigen test result from a physician, registered public health authority, or accredited/approved laboratory obtained no more than 48 hours prior to departure date .
In the event that an international traveler is unable to produce a vaccination certificate or a negative PCR test result older than 72 hours or a negative antigen test result obtained at least 48 hours prior to departure, they must undergo an antigen test at the Port of Entry.
If the person tests positive for COVID-19 during the antigen test, the traveler will still be admitted into the country but, if the traveler has symptoms of COVID19, they must self-isolate a period of ten days after their admission to South Africa.
However, the vaccination or test requirement does not apply to travelers under the age of 12 and daily commuters from neighboring countries.