Trauma numbers on the increase with 38 gunshot wounds over a weekend and 351 stabbings
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JUST weeks after lockdown restrictions were adjusted to level one, the Western Cape Health Department is already seeing an increase in the number of trauma cases.
The department confirmed that in just over a weekend, their staff had seen 1 258 trauma cases. A total of 38 of these were gunshot wounds, 351 were the result of stabbings, 281 were blunt assault cases and 139 due to motor vehicle accidents.
During lockdown level 3 and 4, emergency personnel attended to 148 incidents in red zone areas with 196 transport-related incidents in June.
Chief operating officer of the Western Cape Health Department Dr Saadiq Karriem said most of the trauma cases were linked to alcohol consumption, motor vehicle or pedestrian accidents
Karriem said their public health system had taken a strain in recent days.
“We continue to look at the high numbers of trauma cases across all our public health facilities in the Western Cape,” he said. “Over the weekend from Friday evening, 8pm until Monday, October 18, morning 8am, we had 1 258 trauma-related cases across 24 of our busiest emergency centres in the province.
“Many of these cases are related to a range of factors including alcohol consumption, pedestrian and motor vehicle accidents as well as interpersonal violence.”
Meanwhile, Premier Alan Winde, along with Dr Keith Cloete, head of the Western Cape Health Department hosted a digicom on Thursday where they showcased how those who did not vaccinate were at a higher risk of death by 26%.
Cloete warned that people should be mindful of gatherings as we approach summer and the festive season which could see an increase in numbers as it did last year.
He said Covid-19 cases had decreased by 4%.
“Over a 12-week period during the third wave, those aged 50 years and older accounted for 30% of cases, 60% of hospital admissions and 83% of deaths. We are fast-approaching the summer season where many of us will enjoy reconnecting with family and loved ones, while also taking a well-deserved break. Let’s continue to be vigilant so that we can have a summer to look forward to.
“The proportion of positive Covid-19 tests has decreased to 4%. This is compared to 42% at its highest point on July 26 this year.
“We are currently seeing an average of 127 new diagnoses a day. This is compared to 3 543 at its highest point on August 17. We are currently seeing an average of 31 new admissions and six deaths each day. This is down from 362 new admissions and around 122 deaths at its highest point on August1 and July 30 this year respectively.”
“To ensure that we have a safe and enjoyable break, we will need to play our part and continue practising the lifesaving behaviours that we have learnt to prevent infection in the coming weeks and months.”
“Currently, there are 1 406 Covid-19 patients in our acute hospitals, including 684 in public hospitals and 722 in private hospitals. This excludes persons under investigation and cases in specialised hospital settings.”