A number of new directives have been published to update South Africa’s lockdown rules. These include the re-opening of old age homes as well as pre-schools.
The country is waiting in anticipation to hear whether President Cyril Ramaphosa will announce the move down to lockdown level 1 later this week, and many are viewing the latest directives as positive confirmation of this.
The new directives are as follows:
Minister of Transport Fikile Mbalula gazetted a directive that lays down the rules for international flights including:
– The evacuation of a South African national or permanent resident to the republic;
– Humanitarian operations;
– The transportation of fuel, cargo and goods;
– The repatriation of a foreign national to their country of nationality or permanent residence;
– Medical emergencies in respect of a life-threatening condition;
– The movement of staff of diplomatic and international organisations;
– The return of a South African national or permanent resident to their place of employment, study or residence, outside the republic.
Old age homes and frail care facilities
Minister of Social Development Lindiwe Zulu also published a directive which sets out guidelines for visiting frail care facilities and old age homes:
Visits are now permitted, and the following rules must be abided by:
– There is a pre-visit screening call;
– The visits are planned;
– Visitors are subjected to symptom checking and determination of previous known exposure to COVID-19.
Pre-schools, aftercare, and early childhood development programmes
According to Zulu, early childhood development programmes and partial care facilities may be reopened with strict health and safety protocols in place. These protocols include:
– If a child is twelve years or younger and accompanied by a guardian or adult, the parents or legal guardian must provide the child with the required information for the purpose of the symptom screening;
– A child must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian, or, if not possible, by a person designated by a parent or legal guardian. This will be the protocol in place every day when the child attends an early childhood development programme or a partial care facility;
– A parent, legal guardian or a person designated by a parent or legal guardian has a right to enquire from the early childhood development programme or partial care facility about the details of the measures that have been put in place;
– A child with a known underlying health condition that may place the child at a higher than normal risk category as defined by the Department of Health, may not return unless s a medical practitioner gives written authorisation that it is safe.