Western Cape Premier Alan Winde says they will be keeping track of Covid-19 infections over the long weekend. Picture: Tracey Adams/African News Agency (ANA)
Western Cape Premier Alan Winde says they will be keeping track of Covid-19 infections over the long weekend. Picture: Tracey Adams/African News Agency (ANA)

Keeping a close eye on Covid-19 infections

By Tshego Lepule, Nathan Adams, Nathan Craig Time of article published Apr 4, 2021

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WESTERN CAPE authorities are keeping a close eye on Covid-19 infections following a slight increase, with residents warned to stay alert over the long weekend.

Western Cape Premier Alan Winde says they will be keeping track of Covid-19 infections over the long weekend. Picture: Tracey Adams/African News Agency (ANA)

While new infections have been on a downward trend over the past few weeks, a 5% increase recorded over the week that ended on March 26 was recorded, followed by a 16% increase for the Cape metro.

However, health authorities said new cases as well as the rate of admissions and deaths have plateaued, although 35 deaths were recorded in the week.

By Friday, in the province, 795 people were hospitalised with 159 admitted to the intensive care unit (ICU), with 2 300 active cases.

The National Department of Health also reported a further 49 Covid-19-deaths related by Friday. The overall number of deaths in the country was pinned at 52 946.

The country's recovery rate was confirmed at 95% (1.4 million people).

Latest data from the South African Covid-19 Modelling Consortium Epidemic Explorer showed that infections were down heading into the Eastern long weekend. This is as none of the country’s 52 health districts reported consistent 5-day uptick in new cases.

Yesterday Premier Alan Winde said they would have to analyse figures from the long weekend, compare it to the previous week and other long weekends to see if added restrictions made any impact to infection rates.

President Cyril Ramaphosa restricted alcohol sales at retailers for the long weekend in an effort to curb a possible rise in infections.

“We are tracking the numbers carefully as we are between wave two and three so wherever we see any increases we must zoom into those areas and stabilise them,” said Winde.

He said they were also tracking trauma beds occupancies over the long weekend.

By Friday, Tygerberg and Groote Schuur Hospital had 14 patients, with seven at Karl Bremer and Mitchell’s Plain Hospital with the highest figure of 133 over a two day period.

“While we are not at a space where we have to save beds for Covid-19 patients, trauma means those beds are occupied due to alcohol-related car crashes, assaults or GBV-related incidents which we do not want,” he said.

He pleaded with people to be responsible.

“My message is for everyone to remain responsible over the long weekend, we don’t want to spread the virus and as such need to be careful.”

While the vaccination roll-out had come to a temporary halt this weekend, the number of healthcare workers vaccinated under the Sisonke Protocol Study remained 269 102.

The latest update also shows that to date, more than 9.9 million Covid-19 tests have been done.

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