CTICC to become temporary Covid-19 hospital
The Cape Town International Convention Centre will be used as a temporary Covid-19 hospital, Western Cape Premier Alan Winde said on Wednesday.
This will create the capacity for province to care for an additional 800 people at the peak of the pandemic,he said.
The Western Cape has become the epicentre of the coronavirus pandemic in the country, with 1 870 cases out of the country's total of 4 996 confirmed cases. Thirty-five people have died of coronavirus-related complications in the province.
"The Western Cape’s scenario planning has predicted a shortfall of 1 000 acute beds in the province at the peak of the pandemic.
"The use of the CTICC will allow us to make up the majority of this shortfall- and allow us to render care to those who need it," Winde said.
"We intend to make up the remainder of the shortfall with temporary beds in other facilities, in appropriate geographic locations."
The agreement allows the Western Cape government to make use of the CTICC 1 building immediately up until 7 September, with an option to extend this on a month-to-month basis until the end of the year.
Winde said the CTICC has agreed to waive the hire cost of the venue, as part of its contribution to the fight against coronavirus.
"The temporary infrastructure build, operating and catering costs for the initial hire period will total approximately R47 million. This amount excludes the costs that the Department of Health will incur in providing clinical equipment, oxygen, medication and temporary staff for the temporary hospital."
The intermediate care beds will cater for patients, presenting with milder clinical signs who need hospitalization and treatment including administration of oxygen. The CTICC will not provide care for patients with more severe clinical signs, which will require intensive-care treatment.
Security at the site will be provided by the CTICC and augmented by the City of Cape Town.
Winde said: "The site will be fitted out to be ready by the first week of June, well before the expected peak when these beds will be required.
"The comprehensive layout of all the services which will be made available on site - including the beds, showers, nursing stations, support stations, physio stations and bulk oxygen storage tank spaces, amongst others - has already been prepared and, as of today, is signed off for execution."
Taubie Motlhabane, CEO of the CTICC, said: “During these extraordinary times, we welcome the opportunity for the CTICC to be part of the solution.
"The conversion of CTICC 1 into a temporary COVID-19 hospital facility will add to the resources needed in our healthcare system to fight this pandemic. We are proud to be part of the team.”