Update on the coronavirus by Premier Alan Winde – over 1000 people screened on first day
As at 00h01 on 06 April 2020, the Western Cape had 475 recorded Covid-19 infections.
Sub Districts Cape Town Metro:
Sub Districts Non-Metro:
Saldanha Bay Municipality
As at 12h00 today, there are currently 26 patients in hospital, of which 12 are in ICU.
We are also very sad to note that the Western Cape recorded its second COVID-19 related death over the weekend. The patient was an 82 year old woman.
We convey our sincere condolences to the deceased’s family, friends and community during this very difficult time.
Community testing update:
Community screening got underway in two communities over the weekend (Happy Valley and Ilitha Park) and rolled out in a further five today. A total of 1492 people were screened over the weekend, and 45 swabs taken.
Minister of Health, Nomafrench Mbombo said: “We must ensure that our vulnerable communities are screened and tested in greater numbers to ensure our people are protected against the spread of the COVID-19 disease. I was at Mbekweni in Paarl this morning to give support to our community teams and we had a huge turn-out”.
Over the weekend, we also saw a number of false reports around what the testing entails. One of these was a video indicating that the test swabs are contaminated.
We strongly condemn this fake news. SAPS has indicated to us today that they are investigating this instance of spreading fake news, and I hope the appropriate steps are taken against the person responsible. This kind of messaging is not only inaccurate, it is also dangerous as people could put their own health, and the health of those around them, at risk by not getting tested when they should in fact get tested.
The screening process which we are rolling out entails the following:
- Community Health Workers will go door-to-door to ask people standard questions.
- Depending on the answers, some people will be asked to present themselves for testing.
- Testing will be done in either a mobile unit, or at the nearest health facility - community members will be advised where to go.
- At the health facility/ mobile unit, social distancing measures will be put in place.
- The test will be performed as a mouth swab, which is clinically safe.
- The community member will be advised to quarantine themselves while they await their test result which can take approximately two days.
If the test is positive for COVID-19, the person will be contacted and the process of isolation will be explained to them. If they are unable to isolate themselves in their current home situation, arrangements will be made for them to be transferred to a safe isolation facility.
Their recent close contacts will also be contacted by a tracing team.
This screening is not something to be afraid of. It is part of our country’s effort to stop the spread of the virus, by making sure those who are sick are identified and cared for.
We ask that you welcome these healthcare workers into your communities. By working together, we can stop the spread and save many lives.
This week, we observe World Health Worker Week and we would like to use the opportunity to pay tribute to all health workers who make up our healthcare system and thank them for their hard work throughout the year. As we face this global pandemic, we are especially grateful for the work that our medical staff do and for the sacrifices they make. The best way that we can support the work that these heroes do is by ensuring that we stay home and obey the rules of the lockdown. We also call on residents who want to wear masks in public, to make or use cloth ones, and to reserve N95 respirators and medical masks for our staff who need them most.
Food parcels update:
Following the announcement over the weekend of additional funding for food parcels, the Department of Social Development has begun the rollout of 50 000 food parcels, which will sustain an average household for one month.
Households must meet the following criteria:
Households affected by COVID-19 infections in the following instances:
- A member/s of the family who tested positive for the virus and are in isolation in their homes.
- A household where a member of the family tested positive for the virus and where the family has insufficient means to sustain themselves during the lockdown period.
- A person who is on medication or who suffers from a chronic illness, has insufficient means to sustain themselves, and was assessed and referred by a local clinic or registered health practitioner.
- A person and their household who have insufficient means to sustain themselves during the lockdown period, has been referred by a registered humanitarian relief agency, registered NPO or a local municipality, and assessed by the Department of Social Development. In this instance, persons not yet in receipt of SASSA grants, including the elderly, child headed houses and grant awaiting beneficiaries will be prioritised.
Members of the public can phone 0800 220 250 for DSD general queries, and 0860 142 142 for donation requests and offers between 7am and 4pm (Monday-Friday), send a Please Call Me to 079 769 1207, or email firstname.lastname@example.org