During last week, the Western Cape has seen a 48% increase in the number of positive Covid-19 cases. Picture: Ayanda Ndamane/African News Agency(ANA)
During last week, the Western Cape has seen a 48% increase in the number of positive Covid-19 cases. Picture: Ayanda Ndamane/African News Agency(ANA)

Western Cape has more Covid-19 cases in the second wave, than the first wave

By Theolin Tembo Time of article published Dec 16, 2020

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Cape Town - “The Western Cape has more cases confirmed in the second wave, than compared to the first wave.”

This was revealed by Head of the Department of Health in the Western Cape, Dr Keith Cloete during Premier Alan Winde’s digital press conference to provide an update on the Covid-19 situation.

Cloete explained that during last week, (December 5-12) the Western Cape has seen a 48% increase in the number of positive Covid-19 cases, and has also seen a 25 % increase in hospital admissions.

As of Wednesday, December 16, the province had recorded 26 818 active Covid-19 infections, with a total of 160 800 confirmed Covid-19 cases and 128 750 recoveries. It has also recorded 5 233 deaths, and conducted 917 235 tests.

Cloete said: ”The number of cases we have recorded in the province have now surpassed the number of cases we experienced during the first peak. Our test positivity rates and our hospitalisations are also rapidly approaching the levels we saw during the first peak.“

He said Covid-19 hospitalisations have increased sharply while the hospitals are experiencing trauma and psychiatric pressures. The metro hospitals are running at an average occupancy rate of 78% while rural hospitals are running at an average occupancy rate of 91%.

The southern, western, eastern, northern and Tygerberg sub-districts have shown a stark and rapid increase in cases.

Here is a look at the districts with the most cases over the last two weeks:

The southern, western, eastern, northern and Tygerberg sub-districts have shown a stark and rapid increase in cases. Picture: Western Cape Coronavirus Dashboard
A look at Western Cape rural and metropolitan districts. Picture: Western Cape Coronavirus Dashboard

“Our primary healthcare facilities are facing increasing demand for Covid-19 testing and also then providing triage for confirmed cases.”

In his Surveillance Huddle Report, a report from his weekly briefing, Cloete outlined five key points that the province is experiencing:

  1. Increase in case numbers overwhelming the contact tracing team
  2. Increase in hospitalisations putting strain on services
  3. Complaints of increased lab turnaround time
  4. Increase infection in health workers, resulting in absenteeism - this is increasing the pressure on health services
  5. While there are identifiable clusters, it is otherwise, widespread community transmission.

According to Winde the current situation is serious.

“Throughout the second wave, we will continue to do this, however, we need residents to work with us to flatten the curve and reduce the pressure on our hospital systems and the healthcare workers.”

Cape Argus

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