Gauteng premier says 1 600 more beds will be secured for Covid-19 fight
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Johannesburg - Gauteng Premier David Makhura says the province will secure more beds for provincial hospitals as the province prepares itself for the winter season and a rise in Covid-19 infections.
Makhura, who was speaking at a media briefing on Wednesday, said the province will secure 1 600 beds to deal with coronavirus cases. Of the new beds, 600 will be added to the Dr George Mukhari Academic Hospital cluster and 800 to Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital.
The Ashanti Gold Hospital will receive 200 beds.
Makhura said the province had 10,4 million units of personal protective equipment (PPE) and 66.3 million additional units had been ordered.
Gauteng has 1 720 confirmed cases and over a 1 000 recoveries – as of Wednesday.
The province's breakdown of deaths is seven in Joburg, five in Ekurhuleni, one in Tshwane and two on the West Rand.
Makhura said in terms of social support to poor families in the province, 82 727 households had received relief.
The province will also begin providing vouchers to households in need. A total of 3 368 homeless people have received support, but the number differs from time to time as many of the homeless move around from centres that offer relief.
Makhura said the flu season would pose a challenge and the province was on high alert for the winter season.
More than 500 000 people have entered Gauteng since the grace period for inter-provincial travel was permitted from May 1. The allowance ends at midnight on Thursday.
This grace period was permitted to give people who had left the province before the hard lockdown, which barred inter-provincial travel, on March 27 was implemented.
Makhura said as the province prepares for the worst, the public would have to help the government in ensuring adherence to lockdown regulations to curb the spread of the virus.
He said the public should do more in ensuring that social distancing and adherence to regulations should not be shouldered by the police and SANDF.
"New cases are now coming in the townships. We do not want the police to be the ones to remind community members. The next level will rely on community support. We can only succeed when we work with our communities. We need people in our communities to work with us for us to succeed," Makhura said.