The Western Cape government said it has secured additional oxygen supply from outside the province as the hospitals’ usage exceeds the output of Afrox's Western Cape plant. Picture: Courtney Africa/African News Agency (ANA)
The Western Cape government said it has secured additional oxygen supply from outside the province as the hospitals’ usage exceeds the output of Afrox's Western Cape plant. Picture: Courtney Africa/African News Agency (ANA)

Covid-19: Western Cape secures additional oxygen supply from outside the province

By Theolin Tembo Time of article published Jan 14, 2021

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Cape Town - The Western Cape government said it has secured additional oxygen supply from outside the province as the hospitals’ current usage exceeds the output of Afrox's Western Cape plant.

On Thursday, the Western Cape government said it had put systems and interventions in place to ensure sufficient oxygen supplies to hospitals in the province, in order to cater for the high numbers of Covid-19 hospitalisations in the peak of the resurgence.

The province said that over the past week, the combined oxygen utilisation for public and private hospitals in the province has been about 73 tonnes daily, which was above the production output of 70 tonnes for Afrox's Western Cape plant.

“We have, however, been working closely with the supplier and have secured additional supply from outside of the province. The Western Cape now has five bulk oxygen tankers allocated for the daily delivery of oxygen supplies to individual hospitals.

“We continue to monitor our oxygen utilisation carefully, using a specially designed internal dashboard,” the province said.

“This dashboard is updated daily with the latest information, so that the Department of Health and individual facilities can monitor their oxygen consumption.”

The dashboard provides detailed information including historical usage and bulk storage space available across the system and at a facility level, which allows the province to view the whole system. thereby monitoring oxygen usage across the province.

This allows it to identify and address any pressure points early on. The system also allows facility managers to simulate patient numbers based on that facility's specifications, affording it the opportunity to determine how changes in patient profile would impact oxygen supply.

“For facilities which do not have bulk oxygen supply, the dashboard allows them to estimate the number and size of oxygen cylinders they would need to order to provide specific treatment. It also includes a reporting tool to determine daily pressure points in the system with regard to the timeous delivery of cylinders.

“The oxygen data also links into our tracking systems for beds and available staff. These three elements are key to us providing appropriate health care to all who need it, and these tools give us a full overview of the capacity of our health-care system on any given day,” the province said.

“Our hospitals continue to experience extreme pressure and we call on residents to stay vigilant in implementing prevention measures in their daily lives.”

Cape Argus

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