39 more Covid-19 deaths for the Western Cape as infections reach 38,000
CAPE TOWN - The number of confirmed Covid-19 cases in the Western Cape reached 38,000 on Friday, while 39 more people succumbed to the virus, bringing fatalities so far to 966, Premier Alan Winde's office said.
Of the infections recorded in the province since March, 11,599 were considered currently active, while 25,435 patients have recovered since contracting the virus. Two hundred and forty people have been admitted to intensive care units in the province since the start of the epidemic, out of 1,238 hospital admissions for Covid-19 complications.
The sub-districts with the highest number of infections, were Tygerberg and Khayelitsha, with 3,909 cases and 3,507 cases respectively.
Winde's office said almost a quarter of a million Covid-19 tests have so far been conducted in the Western Cape, which is considered the epicentre of the disease with almost two-thirds of the number of infections that have been recorded nationwide.
It said good progress has been made in reducing a backlog in processing results, which built up as global shortages in diagnostic material began affecting South Africa.
By mid-week, the backlog in unprocessed specimens had been reduced almost eight-fold to about 3,700.
"At the worst of the backlog, 27 000 tests from the Western Cape were sitting in the bottleneck and the Western Cape had to adopt a risk adjusted testing strategy to ensure that those people who are most at risk and who need testing the most, are prioritised," Winde said.
"The backlog has now been significantly reduced and stood at approximately 3700 tests on Wednesday. We anticipate that it will be fully resolved in the coming days."
The National Health Services Laboratory this week told members of Parliament that it had prioritised the province in its efforts to reduce the backlog.
African News Agency