South Africa recorded 1,816 new cases of the novel coronavirus Saturday and 49 deaths, according to Health Minister Zweli Mkhize.

Almost 4 million people have been tested for the virus since it was first detected in the country in March.

Mkhize said 18,620 people were tested for the virus in the last 24 hours.

South Africa’s recovery rate now stands at 88.9% with 576,423 people having recovered.

Mkhize told a nursing conference earlier Saturday that COVID-19 cases and deaths have begun to decline in the country.

South Africa, which has the highest number of infections in Africa and is the eighth most affected country globally, has 648,214 cases and 15,427 deaths.

New daily cases dropped to less than 3,000 compared to June and July when infections hovered between 8,000 and 10,000 daily.

More than 31,000 health care workers, many of them nurses and midwives, contracted COVID-19, including 240 who died in South Africa.

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