WATCH: Inside a Covid-19 ward

Published Jul 6, 2020


CAPE TOWN- As Covid-19 confirmed cases near two hundred thousand in South Africa, many hospitals have seen an increase in the number of admissions and cases in Intensive Care Units (ICU).

“One of the most difficult things here is to decide not to lose hope. Because when we saw him yesterday versus how he is today, he’s a completely different man. Yesterday I was thinking of getting him off the ventilator and now we can’t. This is taking its toll on everyone here.”

These are the sentiments of Specialist physician Dr Pieter Roelofse while treating a patient on a ventilator at Melomed Bellville Covid-19 ICU.

Roelofse says that the lockdown allowed the hospital and ICU ward to be adequately prepared for the influx of patients.

“All this preparation was actually done before we started getting busy and that was a really important advantage of the lockdown. We were properly prepared. Over the last month, we have seen a dramatic increase in the admission of patients.”

Healthcare specialists work around the clock to care for patients, however, Roelofse says the real heroes are the nursing staff.

“Every day they come to work and help us. The sisters and nurses spend 12 hours in that Covid ICU ward and I promise you, that’s very tough,” said Roelofse.

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