Category: Coronavirus

Update on the coronavirus by Premier Alan Winde – 1 August

1 August 2020

As of 1pm on 1 August, the Western Cape  has 10 377 active cases of COVID-19, with a total of 94 197 confirmed cases and 80 750 recoveries.

Total confirmed COVID-19 cases 94 197
Total recoveries 80 750
Total deaths 3 070
Total active cases (currently infected patients) 10 377
Tests conducted 418 585
Hospitalisations 1 311 with 279 in ICU or high care

Data note: It is not always possible to check and verify that the address data supplied for each new recorded case is correct, within the time frames required to provide regular and timely updates. This means that in some instances, cases could be allocated to the wrong sub-districts. We are working with the sub-districts to clean and verify the data and where errors are picked up locally, cases will be re-allocated to the correct areas.

More data is available here: https://coronavirus.westerncape.gov.za/covid-19-dashboard

The Western Cape has recorded an additional 30 deaths, bringing the total number of COVID-19 related deaths in the province to 3070. We send our condolences to their family and friends at this time.

Recoveries:

Today, we are pleased to be able to report that 80 000 people in the Western Cape have been able to recover from COVID-19- a recovery rate of over 80 percent.

The majority of people who contract COVID-19 will experience mild symptoms which may include a fever, cough, sore throat, body aches, headaches and a loss of smell and taste.

These people will be able to recover at home, with symptomatic treatment. However, for those with underlying illnesses including diabetes, heart disease, lung disease or hypertension, the risk of becoming seriously ill are higher.

We have introduced new therapies including the use of dexamethasone and high flow nasal oxygen in our hospitals to treat patients, but preventing infection is still the best way to keep people over the age of 55 and those with comorbidities safe. Every life we lose to COVID-19 is one too many and we can all play a part in protecting the vulnerable and help to save lives.

  • If you have contracted COVID-19, you must self isolate for the recommended period of ten days.
  • If you are unable to self isolate at home, and especially if you share your home with someone who is at risk, such as your elderly parents, or someone with a comorbidity, quarantine and isolation facilities are available. These facilities are safe and comfortable and will allow you to recover, and protect your loved ones.
  • If you fall into a risk group, you must take extra precautions by staying home as much as possible, wearing your mask when you go outside and keeping your distance from other people.
  • The Western Cape Government has developed a strategy to minimize the risk for COVID19 positive people with diabetes. Early indications are that this is already yielding positive results. Because of the higher risk, diabetics especially should seek to get tested as soon as they start to experience symptoms so that their case can be properly managed. For high risk diabetes patients, this may include early admission to the Hospital of Hope for monitoring and treatment.

Media Release: Update on the coronavirus by Premier Alan Winde

 

31 July 2020

As of 1 pm on 31 July, the Western Cape has 10 532 active cases of COVID-19, with a total of 93 413 confirmed cases and 79 841 recoveries.

Total confirmed COVID-19 cases 93 413
Total recoveries 79841
Total deaths 3040
Total active cases (currently infected patients) 10532
Tests conducted 414 304
Hospitalisations 1433 with 281 in ICU or high care

Cape Metro Sub-districts:

 Sub-district Cases   Recoveries
Western 7832  6826
Southern 8107  7047
Northern 5357  4836
Tygerberg 11451  10101
Eastern 8375  7417
Klipfontein 8174  7189
Mitchells Plain 7318  6369
Khayelitsha 7709  7026
Total 64323  56811

Sub-districts:

 District  Sub-district Cases Recoveries
Garden Route Bitou 385 280
Garden Route Knysna 964 647
Garden Route George 2430 1785
Garden Route Hessequa 140 87
Garden Route Kannaland 49 43
Garden Route Mossel Bay 1293 852
Garden Route Oudsthoorn 475 281
Cape Winelands Stellenbosch 1748 1538
Cape Winelands Drakenstein 3779 3358
Cape Winelands Breede Valley 2727 2370
Cape Winelands Langeberg 959 814
Cape Winelands Witzenberg 1261 998
Overberg Overstrand 1338 1178
Overberg Cape Agulhas 191 144
Overberg Swellendam 238 203
Overberg Theewaterskloof 945 794
West Coast Bergrivier 346 268
West Coast Cederberg 110 75
West Coast Matzikama 223 151
West Coast Saldanha Bay Municipality 1135 963
West Coast Swartland 1116 929
Central Karoo Beaufort West 242 116
Central Karoo Laingsburg 25 18
Central Karoo Prince Albert 2 1

Unallocated: 6969 (5137 recovered)

Data note: It is not always possible to check and verify that the address data supplied for each new recorded case is correct, within the time frames required to provide regular and timely updates. This means that in some instances, cases could be allocated to the wrong sub-districts. We are working with the sub-districts to clean and verify the data and where errors are picked up locally, cases will be re-allocated to the correct areas.

More data is available here: https://coronavirus.westerncape.gov.za/covid-19-dashboard

The Western Cape has recorded an additional 31 deaths, bringing the total number of COVID-19 related deaths in the province to 3040. We send our condolences to their family and friends at this time.

Safety in the “new normal”:

The Western Cape has started to see a stabilisation in the number of COVID-19 infections, hosptalisations and deaths in certain parts of the province. I would like to thank all of our residents who have played their part in making this happen by staying at home as much as possible, wearing their masks and practicing social distancing when they go out, and keeping up with hygiene protocols like hand washing, keeping surfaces clean and coughing and sneezing into an arm or an elbow. These are small things that we can all do, which have a collective impact. We must continue these behaviours, especially now that the numbers have started to stabilise in order to ensure that we don’t see second waves of infections forming.

COVID-19 will be around for many more months to come, and adapting how we live now, will not only help us avoid becoming sick or infecting our loved ones, but will also allow more businesses to start to operate fully again, and save thousands of jobs which currently hang in the balance.

We expect that the new tourism regulations will be gazetted in the next few days, which will allow intra-provincial tourism accommodation establishments to begin operating. The tourism sector is one of the biggest job creators in the Western Cape, especially in our small towns and rural areas and we are pleased that these establishments will be able to allowed to open for business.

We still intend to engage with the national government on ways that we can support other businesses in the province that are being negatively impacted by the alert level 3 regulations.

We must put all of our energy into averting the second pandemic of unemployment. I therefore call on all of these businesses to be responsible when you re-open and ensure that you are following all of the rules and guidelines set out for safe operations. We do not want businesses to become sites of infection, putting their staff and clients at risk, and which will ultimately only further negatively impact the sector.

For those residents who will be booking trips and stays once business has re-opened, we thank you for supporting this sector at this time but urge you to travel responsibly, and to continue taking the same precautions you would at home, while on your holidays and weekends away.

Media Release: Update on the coronavirus by Premier Alan Winde

30 July 2020

As of 1pm on 30 July, the Western Cape had 10 915 active cases of COVID-19, with a total of 92 845 confirmed cases and 78921 recoveries.

Total confirmed COVID-19 cases 92 845
Total recoveries 78921
Total deaths 3009
Total active cases (currently infected patients) 10 915
Tests conducted 411 015
Hospitalisations 1500 with 280 in ICU or high care

Cape Metro Sub-districts:

 Sub-district Cases   Recoveries
Western 7812   6766
Southern 8104   6983
Northern 5344   4778
Tygerberg 11419   10005
Eastern 8314   7338
Klipfontein 8157   7146
Mitchells Plain 7274   6289
Khayelitsha 7697   6984
Total 64121   56289

Sub-districts:

 District  Sub-district Cases Recoveries
Garden Route Bitou 383 264
Garden Route Knysna 964 608
Garden Route George 2419 1728
Garden Route Hessequa 140 79
Garden Route Kannaland 49 42
Garden Route Mossel Bay 1279 824
Garden Route Oudsthoorn 475 277
Cape Winelands Stellenbosch 1744 1523
Cape Winelands Drakenstein 3777 3322
Cape Winelands Breede Valley 2721 2331
Cape Winelands Langeberg 958 796
Cape Winelands Witzenberg 1259 976
Overberg Overstrand 1336 1164
Overberg Cape Agulhas 190 142
Overberg Swellendam 238 196
Overberg Theewaterskloof 947 784
West Coast Bergrivier 344 263
West Coast Cederberg 110 72
West Coast Matzikama 222 147
West Coast Saldanha Bay Municipality 1135 949
West Coast Swartland 1114 895
Central Karoo Beaufort West 239 108
Central Karoo Laingsburg 23 17
Central Karoo Prince Albert 2 1

Unallocated: 6656 (5124 recovered)

Data note: It is not always possible to check and verify that the address data supplied for each new recorded case is correct, within the time frames required to provide regular and timely updates. This means that in some instances, cases could be allocated to the wrong sub-districts. We are working with the sub-districts to clean and verify the data and where errors are picked up locally, cases will be re-allocated to the correct areas.

More data is available here: https://coronavirus.westerncape.gov.za/covid-19-dashboard

The Western Cape has recorded an additional 24 deaths, bringing the total number of COVID-19 related deaths in the province to 3009. We send our condolences to their family and friends at this time.

Department of the Premier budget speech:

Earlier today, I delivered the Department of the Premier’s budget speech to the Western Cape legislature- detailing the work this department has done over the past four and a half months, and  outlining how it will use the opportunities and lessons presented by this crisis, to lead this government into the new normal.

An excerpt from the speech and a breakdown of the main expenditure are provided below:

COVID-19 has had a significant impact on the people of the Western Cape, on our economy and on how this government conducts its day-to-day business.  This crisis has required us to respond quickly, decisively and innovatively.

The Department of the Premier has played a major role in our whole of government response, becoming more responsive, and leading the change across the Western Cape Government.

Since the first case of COVID-19 was detected in South Africa, our first priority has been to the people of this province- whether that is ensuring that they have access to appropriate healthcare, responding to the humanitarian crisis, or ensuring that we continue to deliver government services throughout this period.

This province took the lockdown seriously, and used the time afforded to us by the hard lockdown to prepare our systems for the peak. The DG, Dr Harry Malila and the Department of the Premier have led the way in this regard- and have continued to play an important role in overseeing our hotspot strategy to ensure that as we opened up more of our economy, we did not see a significant spike in new infections.

As a government, our response to this crisis has been world class- taking the opportunity to learn lessons from around the world, and making use of the exceptional talent that exists in departments across the public service to chart our own way forward.

We have developed innovative solutions to problems-like creating the Red Dot Taxi service to transport healthcare workers safely, and we have started delivering medicines to people’s homes rather than have them stand in long queues.

This crisis has also shown us how quickly a government can respond- we built a hospital in four weeks.

The Department of the Premier has received an additional allocation of R6.350 million from the Provincial Treasury , and has repurposed just over R72 million within the vote-R41 million of which has come from savings on compensations, achieved in part, by putting on hold all non-critical vacancies.

Some of the key expenditure items included:

  • R30 million on the biggest communications campaign this province has ever undertaken- aimed at equipping residents with clear, trustworthy information that allows them to protect themselves and their families and bringing about behaviour change. This campaign flighted eight different radio adverts in over 4000 slots, on 4 regional and 29 community radio stations across the province, in three languages. It also included nearly 10 000 street pole posters, loud hailing, newspaper adverts in 34 different newspapers, SMS and please call me messages, social media messaging, posters, flyers, printable posters and material for businesses and branded taxi decals.
  • R11.158 million to equip the Western Cape Government call centre to deal with increased call volumes for humanitarian food relief. When the province announced that it would be making 50 000 food parcels available to respond to the humanitarian crisis created by the hard lockdown, are call centre was inundated- receiving up to 14 000 calls a day in April. The additional funding was used to increase the available incoming lines into the call centre from 210 to 3000, and develop an online system in an effort to reduce the call drop rate.
  • R6.350 million to equip the Disaster Management Centre and the Provincial Government’s Joint Operations Centre with the technology to conduct remote meetings. At the start of the pandemic, this technology enabled us to hold daily meetings to plan and measure our response in the province. We currently hold twice weekly cabinets, including district municipalities, the various hotspot and workstream teams, law enforcement and SAPS to ensure ongoing, coordinated management of all aspects of the pandemic in this province.

The full speech can be viewed on Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mC1MPUJwvW8 or on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/windealan/videos/597683821118006/?epa=SEARCH_BOX

The Western Cape releases Procurement Disclosure Report:

Today, Minister of Finance and Economic Opportunities, David Maynier published the Western Cape’s Procurement Disclosure Report which details all of the PPE procurement and expenditure undertaken in the province. The first report covers the period from 1 April 2020 to 30 June 2020, and will be published monthly, quarterly and annually.

Many South Africans are currently raising questions about how funding is being spent during this pandemic in South Africa. This report serves as a commitment by the Western Cape to operate transparently and openly, in the interests of good governance.

All spheres of government are currently experiencing a tight economic environment in which we must ensure that money is being spent appropriately and responsibly. Corruption is expensive, unaffordable and it thrives in secrecy and obscurity. By putting these reports out into the public domain, we open ourselves and our procurement systems up to the kind of public scrutiny that will not allow corruption to thrive. If, at any point, it emerges that there has been untoward behaviour in the procurement of PPE, we will not hesitate to take action.

Tourism announcements:

We welcome the announcements today by the Minister of Tourism Mmamoloko Kubayi-Ngubane,  allowing for intra-provincial leisure accommodation and extending the curfew to 10pm, allowing restaurants to trade later. The alert level 3 restrictions have placed extreme pressure on some of the leading job creating sectors in the Western Cape- including the tourism and hospitality sector. As a province, we believe that if we do not support businesses and allow them to re-open safely, we will face a second, equally serious, unemployment pandemic.

Today’s announcements are a step in the right direction, but we will continue to engage with the national government on this issue because they do not completely address the crisis. I have already written to Ministers Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma and Zweli Mkhize to request an urgent meeting to discuss the impact of some of the alert level 3 restrictions on our major job creation sectors, and I do not intend to cancel that request in light of these new announcements.

We appeal to those tourism establishments who will be opening for trade in light of these new announcements to take all the necessary steps to ensure that they can do so safely.

Accommodation for leisure FINALLY open!

MEDIA RELEASE BY DAVID MAYNIER

WESTERN CAPE MINISTER OF FINANCE AND ECONOMIC OPPORTUNITIES

Date: 30 July 2020

Release: immediately

Accommodation for leisure FINALLY open!

We can, finally welcome the confirmation by the Minister of Tourism, Mmamoloko Kubayi-Ngubane, that accommodation for leisure is open for travel within provinces under Alert Level 3.

What this means is that families who live in the province can now spend a weekend away at their favourite getaway spot and enjoy the best that the Western Cape has to offer, while doing so safely and responsibly.

We also welcome the announcement that the curfew will start at 10pm to allow restaurants an uninterrupted dinner service.

We have repeatedly called for the opening of these sectors, who have already done a great deal of work to develop health and safety guidelines and protocols aimed at ‘de-risking’ the sector.

While these adjustments to the restrictions will certainly help to mitigate the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on the tourism and hospitality industry, they don’t go far enough, and so we will continue to engage with national government on this.

This finally brings to an end, months of flip-flopping that have caused immense financial damage and significant jobs losses that could have been avoided if a common-sense approach had been taken from the start.

We call on all people who can, to book a holiday or even just a night away, to support the tourism and hospitality sector in the Western Cape.

We all need to contribute to economic recovery in the Western Cape – and supporting our accommodation sector, while visiting and supporting shops and restaurants in local towns at the same time has never been more important!

Notes for media:
Please find soundbyte from Minister David Maynier attached

To read the statement online visit: https://www.westerncape.gov.za/news/accommodation-leisure-finally-open

Media Queries:

Francine Higham

Spokesperson for the Provincial Minister of Finance and Economic Opportunities

(Responsible for the Provincial Treasury and the Department of Economic Development and Tourism)

Tel: 021 483 4327 / Cell: 071 087 5150 / Email: francine.higham@westerncape.gov.za

If you do not want to receive future media releases from Minister David Maynier then please reply directly to this email requesting to be removed from our mailing list.

Procurement Disclosure Report a commitment to clean governance

MEDIA RELEASE BY DAVID MAYNIER

WESTERN CAPE MINISTER OF FINANCE AND ECONOMIC OPPORTUNITIES

Date: 30 July 2020

Release: immediately

Procurement Disclosure Report a commitment to clean governance

We are pleased to publish the first edition of the Procurement Disclosure Report by Provincial Treasury.

The Procurement Disclosure Report details all personal protective equipment (PPE) procurement and expenditure in the Western Cape in response to the Covid-19 pandemic, in a regular and standardised report that will be made available on a monthly, quarterly and annual basis to the public.

The first Procurement Disclosure Report details all PPE procurement and expenditure by Western Cape government departments from 1 April 2020 to 30 June 2020 and, on each transaction, includes details such as the name of the supplier, a description of the item, the unit price per item and the total spent.

Minister of Finance and Economic Opportunities, David Maynier, said: “We consider the Procurement Disclosure Report an excellent example of transparency, and another innovative step towards maintaining clean government in the Western Cape.

“We have invested significant amounts of money on PPE in the fight against Covid-19 in the Western Cape, and so I am pleased that this initiative by Provincial Treasury as an important measure designed to mitigate the risks in supply chain management and ensure this money is spent correctly.”

Provincial Treasury, Head of Department, David Savage, added: “The public Procurement Disclosure Report enhances transparency in our supply chains by providing procurement information that is easy to access and meaningful to all interested parties and oversight bodies. Because we use different supply chain management systems with varying lead and lag times, we hope that this consolidated report will eliminate duplication and discrepancies in reporting.”

Other pro-active support and compliance measures implemented by Provincial Treasury to mitigate procurement risks include the establishment of a Central Procurement Advisory Committee to support and advise the main procuring departments and enhanced surveillance of disaster-related procurement by internal audits of procurement transactions.

To access the first Procurement Disclosure Report visit: www.westerncape.gov.za/provincial-treasury/procurement-disclosure-report

For more information and to submit feedback or suggestion on improvements to the Public Disclosure Report please email to our Supplier Helpdesk.

Notes for media:
Please find soundbyte from Minister David Maynier attached

To read the statement online visit: https://www.westerncape.gov.za/provincial-treasury/news/procurement-disclosure-report-commitment-clean-governance

Media Queries:

Francine Higham

Spokesperson for the Provincial Minister of Finance and Economic Opportunities

(Responsible for the Provincial Treasury and the Department of Economic Development and Tourism)

Tel: 021 483 4327 / Cell: 071 087 5150 / Email: francine.higham@westerncape.gov.za

Media Release: Update on the coronavirus by Premier Alan Winde

30 July

As of 1pm on 29 July, the Western Cape had 11 522 active cases of COVID-19, with a total of 92 330 confirmed cases and 77 823 recoveries.

Total confirmed COVID-19 cases 92 330
Total recoveries 77823
Total deaths 2985
Total active cases (currently infected patients) 11522
Tests conducted 408539
Hospitalisations 1482 with 273 in ICU or high care

Cape Metro Sub-districts:

 Sub-district Cases   Recoveries
Western 7760   6676
Southern 8067   6896
Northern 5338   4705
Tygerberg 11343   9905
Eastern 8285   7262
Klipfontein 8140   7090
Mitchells Plain 7232   6212
Khayelitsha 7688   6941
Total 63 853   55 687

Sub-districts:

 District  Sub-district Cases Recoveries
Garden Route Bitou 376 242
Garden Route Knysna 930 578
Garden Route George 2398 1635
Garden Route Hessequa 139 75
Garden Route Kannaland 49 41
Garden Route Mossel Bay 1221 764
Garden Route Oudsthoorn 442 255
Cape Winelands Stellenbosch 1738 1496
Cape Winelands Drakenstein 3769 3280
Cape Winelands Breede Valley 2690 2291
Cape Winelands Langeberg 943 775
Cape Winelands Witzenberg 1240 953
Overberg Overstrand 1322 1142
Overberg Cape Agulhas 188 131
Overberg Swellendam 238 187
Overberg Theewaterskloof 942 772
West Coast Bergrivier 339 261
West Coast Cederberg 109 71
West Coast Matzikama 215 137
West Coast Saldanha Bay Municipality 1134 938
West Coast Swartland 1111 873
Central Karoo Beaufort West 232 105
Central Karoo Laingsburg 21 15
Central Karoo Prince Albert 2 1

Unallocated: 6689 (5118 recovered)

Data note: It is not always possible to check and verify that the address data supplied for each new recorded case is correct, within the time frames required to provide regular and timely updates. This means that in some instances, cases could be allocated to the wrong sub-districts. We are working with the sub-districts to clean and verify the data and where errors are picked up locally, cases will be re-allocated to the correct areas.

More data is available here: https://coronavirus.westerncape.gov.za/covid-19-dashboard

The Western Cape has recorded an additional 37 deaths, bringing the total number of COVID-19 related deaths in the province to 2985. We send our condolences to their loved ones at this time.

Department of the Premier budget speech:

This morning, at 10am, Premier Alan Winde will deliver the Department of the Premier’s budget adjustment speech in a hybrid sitting of the Western Cape Legislature. Premier Winde will detail the work the Department has done in leading the Western Cape’s whole of government response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Members of the media can follow the speech and debate here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mC1MPUJwvW8

Media Release by Premier Alan Winde at his weekly digital press conference 

 29 July 2020 

“All indications are that the Western Cape Covid-19 pandemic is stabilizing & starting to decline in some areas – but we must be vigilant”  

At today’s digitial press conference, the Western Cape Government provided an update on our health response to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Our teams have been working around the clock to ensure that our health systems are prepared to provide care to every single person, should they need it.

From the very beginning, we understood that the Hard Lockdown was necessary to buy us time to do this. We have not taken this responsibility for granted, and I am extremely grateful to every single person who worked with determination and speed to ensure we could provide the best possible services to all our people.

Evidence-based, data-led approach to the pandemic

The Western Cape has adopted an evidence-based, data-led approach to this unprecedented health emergency. Following top scientific advice, and using provisioning scenarios, we have planned for the worst, but intervened to ensure the best possible outcome. This is the responsibility of a caring government.

Part of this process is to continuously assess the data to ensure that we are on the right track, and that we have all the resources needed to provide the care needed.

A stabilization of the pandemic, with a decline in some areas – but extra vigilance now needed to prevent new flare-ups

Our Western Cape Department of Health has been studying a number of indicators available to us, including the positivity rate of Covid-19 tests, the number of new Covid-19 deaths, the number of Covid-19 hospitalisations in both the public and private sector, and the number of infected healthcare workers to ascertain trends in the pandemic.

All indications (from this data) are that the pandemic has started to stabilize in the Western Cape, with a decline in some areas being experienced (we are noticing different paces in different areas).

While this is good news, it does not mean that we can rest on our laurels. On the contrary, it means we must be even more vigilant. We must keep our curve moving in the right direction, in all areas – downwards. If we let our foot off the pedal now, and don’t continue to change our behaviour, then we risk new flare-ups and an acceleration of cases in the future. We cannot allow this to happen.

My message to our residents is therefore to take hope from this latest data and use it to be more determined than ever before to change your behaviour. We can all make a real difference by following the golden rules at all time, including:

  • Wearing a mask whenever in public
  • Washing your hands regularly with soap and water, or by using hand sanitizer
  • Keeping a good distance from others, of at least 1.5 metres
  • Cleaning surfaces in your home and workplace
  • By not touching your face, nose and mouth with unwashed hands
  • By staying home when sick and calling our hotline (021 928 4102) for advice (those with difficulty breathing and diabetic residents must seek medical care immediately).

The Western Cape Government will continue to intervene to slow the spread of the virus, using our All-of-Government, Hotspot Containment Strategy. The fight is not over: it must continue with the same rigour and determination as before.

Update on Testing

As a result of the Western Cape Government’s targeted testing strategy focussed on vulnerable groups, we have been able to prevent a backlog of tests at the NHLS. This has meant that there has been quick turnaround of test results.

The average turnaround times are as follows:

  • 46 hours at a clinic
  • 41 hours at a Community Development Centre
  • 27 hours at a Community Healthcare Centre
  • 23 hours at our hospitals

This turnaround time is allowing our health experts to intervene quicker and provide life-saving treatment where necessary.

I want to extend a thank you to the teams at the NHLS and other labs for their contribution to the fight against Covid-19.

The Western Cape’s Diabetes Action Plan – early results are promising 

As a type 2 diabetic, who has also been infected with Covid-19, the Western Cape’s Diabetes Action Plan has been very close to my heart. I am therefore very pleased to report that early results from the project are promising.

Diabetic patients who test positive for Covid-19 are contacted by our teams, and where necessary, hospitalised at the Hospital of Hope before their condition worsens. This allows for our healthcare workers to monitor their condition and ensure life-saving care is provided should they deteriorate.

Initial feedback from this project is as follows:

  • 152 diabetic patients have been contacted by the clinical team
  • 63 diabetic patients have then been hospitalised
  • 40 of these patients have been discharged (63%), with 3 of the patients dying (4,7%)
  • None of the 20 patients currently admitted are in clinical distress

This is extremely promising. Our initial data suggested that 42% of all diabetic patients admitted to hospital died. This data therefore suggests that early diagnosis and healthcare does make a big difference for this high-risk group.

The Western Cape Department of Health will publish a detailed report on these findings in due course.

Healthcare system platform update

The early indication that the pandemic is starting to ease in some areas of the Western Cape is reflected in our healthcare services platform capacity.

  • The Hospital of Hope (862 beds), has admitted 1366 patients to date, and currently has 139 patients admitted. There have been 1150 discharges, and 77 deaths at this field hospital to date.
  • The Brackengate Intermediate Care Facility (338 beds) has admitted 82 patients, and currently has 17 patients admitted. There have been 65 discharges and no deaths to date.
  • The Thusong Centre, Khayelitsha (60 beds) has admitted 234 patients, with 21 currently admitted. There have been 176 discharges and 31 deaths to date.
  • Our fourth facility, Sonstraal Hospital, should start accepting patients by 10 August 2020.
  • In the Metro, the public health platform for all patients (Covid-19 and non-Covid-19) is currently at 71%.

While the platform has pressures, it is coping with the demands on it.

The Western Cape’s second “unemployment” pandemic

During today’s press conference I made clear that the Western Cape Government is committed to fighting the second, equally serious unemployment pandemic taking root in our province.

From the very beginning, I have argued that we should not treat our Covid-19 response as a zero-sum game. We can save lives now and do so in a way that will also save lives in the future.

The reality is that we are facing a serious humanitarian crisis in the Western Cape, as tens of thousands of people lose their jobs, and access to income. A job is not a ‘nice-to-have’: it is the difference between putting food on the table and starving.

We have to work with the private sector and businesses to ensure that they open safely, to slow the spread of the virus. And where they can open safely, we must allow them to do so.

For this reason, I have written to the Minster of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs, Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma, and Minister of Health, Dr Zweli Mkhize, to request a meeting to discuss the impact of regulations on the Western Cape’s economy and dire consequences it is having on our most vulnerable communities.

– ENDS –

Press Release: Hotspot Awareness increased for Thembalethu and Pacaltsdorp in George

Press Release: Hotspot Awareness increased for Thembalethu and Pacaltsdorp in George
Issued George Municipality, Wednesday 29 July

The Western Cape Provincial Government uses a dashboard to track the number of reported Covid-19 positive cases which updated on a daily basis. The dashboard shows the number of tests done, deaths reported, and the number of recoveries  and categorises the Western Cape districts by the amount of infections, monitoring  the trends in infections, deaths and recoveries. Based on the heat mapping derived from this dashboard the Western Cape and Garden Route District Covid -19 Command Centre  together with George Municipality are able to identify localized areas as “hotspots” – these are areas where the rate of infection has increased dramatically through community transmission.

The National Government and Western Cape Government have developed hotspot strategies aimed at reducing community transmission of COVID-19, and the morbidity and mortality of vulnerable people. The premise is to get  people to stay at home unless necessary to travel, to maintain physical distance outside the home, to always use a mask, and to maintain hygiene. The awareness is coupled with the targeted screening and testing of vulnerable people. Various hotspots have been identified in the Western Cape  including  the Cape Winelands, the West Coast, Overberg, the Garden Route, Tygerberg, Khayelitsha, Klipfontein, Mitchells Plain, and parts of the Cape Flats. Within the Garden Route localized hotspots have been identified in Knysna, Mossel Bay and in George – specifically Thembalethu and Pacaltsdorp.

A dedicated multi-disciplinary task team has been established to give special attention to those communities showing high rates of transmission of infection and to address the adherence to the Covid-19 regulations and health protocols in general. The awareness methods utilized by the multidisciplinary Covid-19 task team led by  George Municipality include the use of a trailer banner which will move around to different streets within an area and the erection of  lamppole posters. These are supplemented by community radio advertising campaigns, outreaches including radio outside broadcasts, the handing out of flyers and an active social media campaign. Besides the dedicated awareness campaign, the sanitisation and disinfection of public areas are regularly undertaken by GRDM together with outreach programmes implemented by their EHP officials on an ongoing basis.

The public can access the following link to review the statistics per town and per suburb: https://coronavirus.westerncape.gov.za/covid-19-dashboard

Criticism of the targeted awareness is noted on social media and it is important to stress that this is not about stigmatizing a particular area. This is being done to protect the community members living in that area . To ensure that they are aware that there is a high infection rate within their area and that they need to take extra care to keep themselves and their families safe.

Chantel Edwards-Klose
Communications: Manager

Office of the Municipal Manager

Office: 044 801 9160

Cell: 082 350 2420

Email: cedwardsklose@george.gov.za

Media Alert: Premier Winde to hold digital press conference

28 July 2020

Tomorrow, Western Cape Premier Alan Winde will hold a digital press conference over Microsoft Teams which will provide an update on the Western Cape’s health response to Covid-19.

Premier Winde will be joined by Health Minister Nomafrench Mbombo and Health HOD, Dr Keith Cloete.

Date:  29 July 2020

Time:  12 pm

Digital platform: Microsoft Teams

Please confirm your attendance by 9am tomorrow and provide your name, surname, the name of your publication and your email address to be added to Microsoft Teams.  We will provide you with a meeting invite to the briefing, upon your confirmation. Only those who have confirmed attendance will be admitted.

News Release: A positive attitude helped her beat COVID-19

28 July 2020

For Immediate Release

An asthmatic official employed at the Garden Route District Municipality (GRDM), Ms Spasina Brinkhuys, recently received a notification from the laboratory that she tested positive for COVID-19.

Now out of isolation, she recalls how she got the annual flue this time of the year; however this year her minor symptoms resulted in her going for a COVID-19 test, which confirmed her suspicion.

She stated that on Friday, 17 July 2020, prior to the week when she received her results, she started experiencing mild flu-like symptoms. On Saturday morning, not knowing whether it was the normal flu or perhaps COVID-19 as she had a runny nose, she decided that she would need to work from home as from the Monday the following week. By Monday morning when her symptoms were unchanged, she decided to visit her physician who recommended that she needed to go for a COVID-19 test at the local PathCare pathology practice. With a short moment of waiting for a test that took place in seconds, she received her results in the evening of the same day. “It did not come as a shock, as I was mentally prepared for the news. I just said to myself, I need to fight this infection with all positivity I have in me,” she said.

The first thing Spasina did after receiving her results in the evening, was to immediately wake up all the members in her household to break the news, to ensure that they follow all quarantine protocols and to stay safe while she had to put herself into self-isolation.  Early the next morning, she also contacted the GRDM to inform them about her results. GRDM responded by immediately closing the head office for disinfection and, informing her close contacts. Spasina also informed the school that her children attend.

Her family supported her during this period and constantly monitored her symptoms. During this period she used the paracetamols prescribed by her physician, multivitamins, ate many fruits, as well as vegetables rich in Vitamin C and drank plenty of hot fluids. She further made sure that she caught some morning sunlight.

On day-4 of being in isolation she sent an e-mail to her employer, stating:

“I was wearing my mask all the time and using my gloves while I was working – but I still got the virus.

I normally get flu this time of the year and my current symptoms are the same as normal flu.

Not everyone will get this virus – if your immune system is strong enough, then one won’t get infected. And when one does get the virus, it’s not necessary transmitted from someone specific, it could have been transmitted from droplets left in the air. I therefore don’t  know who gave it to me and how or when I got  infected, and I  also did not get all the  COVID-19 symptoms.

My experience is that I just got my normal flu symptoms, but I tested positive.

My doctor gave me Panado capsules and said it’s the only medication to use, and in addition I used more and more vitamins.

Today is my 4th day and I am feeling very good”.

In closing she highlighted: “I was very lucky” and added that many others who contract the virus develop severe complications and others tragically die. “I have asthma; I believe God really protected me throughout my COVID-19 journey”.

She would like to share a word of gratitude to her physician who recommended that she go for testing, practitioners at PathCare for making her feel at ease when they tested her, her family for their support, care and love, as well as her employer, the Garden Route District Municipality and to all those who supported her during this uncertain period of her life.

Photo captionSpasina Brinkhuys, Manager for Records and Archives at Garden Route District Municipality, who defeated the COVID-19 Coronavirus.

ENDS