Johannesburg - As South Africa rang in the New Year with a 9pm curfew and no alcohol sales, Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital said it had no patients in its trauma rescue area.
“Its the first in history of the hospital trauma rescue area has no patient on the 1st of the new year,” the hospital posted on its Facebook page showing pictures of empty hospital beds.
Did you know, its the first in history of the hospital trauma rescue area has no patient on the 1st of the new year. #vukabaravuka #flattenthecurve #bara_rocks #GrowingGautengTogetherPosted by Chris Hani Baragwanath Academic Hospital on Thursday, December 31, 2020
Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital, the third-largest hospital in the world, with over 3 000 beds, provides support to surrounding hospitals and on Tuesday said that they had 139 Covid-19 cases.
Acting chief executive of Chris Hani-Baragwanath Hospital, Steve Mankupane, said on Tuesday that most new cases at the hospital were young people.
He said the hospital was coping with admissions at present, and had just 10 Covid-19 patients on ventilators.
On Monday President Cyril Ramaphosa announced that the country would enter an adjusted level 3 lockdown to curb the second wave of Covid-19. Restrictions included a curfew of 9pm and a ban of alcohol sales.
As the country struggled with a lack of hospital beds for a sharp increase of Covid-19 patients, Ramaphosa said in his address to the nation on Monday that the consumption of alcohol in restaurants, in nightclubs and taverns had contributed to risky behaviour like not wearing masks and not observing social distancing.
“Excessive alcohol consumption is also driving up the number of trauma cases in our hospitals.
“According to the data we have, with every relaxation of the restrictions on the sale of alcohol, the number of trauma cases reporting at our hospitals has increased.
“These trauma cases are putting an unnecessary strain on our already stretched public health facilities.”
South Africa on New Year’s Eve for the first time breached the 18 000 mark for new daily Covid-19 cases while 436 more Covid-19 related deaths were reported.
The country has now recorded a cumulative total of 1 057 161 cases, Health Minister Zweli Mkhize said on Thursday.