Picture: Courtney Africa/African News Agency(ANA)
Picture: Courtney Africa/African News Agency(ANA)

Over 80% of recorded Covid-19 cases in the Western Cape have recovered

By Shakirah Thebus Time of article published Aug 3, 2020

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Cape Town - The country remains ranked number 5 in the global Covid-19 infection rate when it breached 500 000 infections mark behind the US, Brazil, Russia and India.

At the weekend, over 10000 new Covid-19 infections were reported by the National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD), bringing the cumulative figure to 503 290 confirmed infections, 152676 active cases and 342461 recoveries as of August 1.

Across the country, around 8153 people have since succumbed to the virus. Over 3 million Covid-19 tests were carried out. South Africa also accounts for more than 50% of infections in Africa.

On Sunday, President Cyril Ramaphosa said that the country’s recovery rate was now at 68% with case fatality rate at 1.6%, significantly lower than that of the global average.

“Over the past few months, we have undertaken an unprecedented mobilisation of resources to prepare our country for the inevitable increase in cases. In every province, hospitals were reorganised and readied to manage an influx of patients. Government provided training for health personnel, distributed large quantities of personal protective equipment, and put in place systems to monitor outbreaks and respond quickly,” said Ramaphosa.

“We need, however, to continue with these efforts to further increase the capacity of our health facilities. Additional facilities, equipment and personnel are being deployed in provinces still experiencing an increase in infections.”

The Western Cape remains the top contributor of infections. On Sunday, it had 10630 active cases of Covid-19, with a total of 94 691 confirmed cases and 80 956 recoveries.

The province has noted a recovery rate of over 80% the premier said on Saturday. He also said that treatments such as dexamethasone and high-flow nasal oxygen are being utilised in hospitals for those who are critically ill with Covid-19.

Premier Alan Winde said the province was witnessing a stabilisation of cases and a decline in the pandemic in some areas.

“While this is good news, we know that Covid-19 will be with us for a long time still... How we all behave will have a significant impact on how the pandemic continues to play out in the province, and will help us to avoid a second wave of infections as we have seen in other parts of the world. It is therefore important that we continue a strong focus on case containment over the next 12 to 18 months,” he said.

While citizens are grappling with the virus, politicians and their family members are dominating the discourse over corruption related to the procurement of personal protective equipment. Ramaphosa said law-enforcement agencies would investigate all reports of alleged corruption and irregularities in the procurement of medical and other supplies.

To stem corruption within the health sector, the Federation of Unions of South Africa (Fedusa) said intermediaries should be taken out of the process for PPE procurement, and that hospitals and other institutions should be allowed to purchase medical supplies directly from manufacturers.

Fedusa also called for an urgent probe into allegations of corruption related to the procurement of PPE. It said that the National Treasury’s proposal to centralise procurement of PPEs was not enough to stop corruption.

Cape Argus

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