IN QUOTES| Second surges, high-risk patients & the economy: Covid-19 in the Western Cape

20 August 2020 - 18:53 By Cebelihle Bhengu
Western Cape premier Alan Winde on Thursday gave an update on the province's response to Covid-19 and its economic recovery plan. File photo.
Western Cape premier Alan Winde on Thursday gave an update on the province's response to Covid-19 and its economic recovery plan. File photo.
Image: Twitter/Alan Winde

The Western Cape government gave an update on Thursday on its response to Covid-19 as well as the province's economic recovery plan during level 2 of lockdown.

Premier Alan Winde urged people to support local businesses.

Dr Keith Cloete, head of the province's health department, said there had been a notable decrease in Covid-19 cases.

Here are six key quotes from the presser:

Helping businesses

“I know that up until now, we've been saying you need to stay at home as much as possible, you need to make sure that you wear your mask, social distancing and watching your hygiene practices. I'm asking you to continue [with this], but venture out from home and support local businesses and save jobs.” — Alan Winde

Covid-19 cases

“The positivity rate is now at its lowest since ... May, and is at 15%. This means that for every 100 tests we send to the laboratories, only 15 are positive. That is also an indication that our testing sensitivity is better because we're testing more people to get positive cases.” — Dr Keith Cloete

Second surge and the economy

“We are retaining our hotspot management and Dr Keith and his team will be monitoring each and every part of this province. That stays in place, even as we start to move our focus to the economy. We might be closing down some of our facilities, but we will be keeping some in abeyance because we need to make sure that we do have that extra capacity.” — Alan Winde

High-risk patients' mortality rate

“There's a significant reduction in mortality and we've started the high-risk intervention in rural districts. We encourage all known diabetics that have any symptoms to present very early for Covid testing, because we've proven that with early intervention, you can have better outcomes for diabetics with Covid.” — Dr Keith Cloete 

Moving to level 1

“As we are opening up the hospitality industry, under level 1, we're looking for international travel. But we can only do that when we can prove internally in SA that our hospitality industry is geared up — they're able to grow and accept customers again without seeing the virus infection rates lifting. If we can get that right in the next weeks, that will enable us to lobby for movement to the next level.” — Alan Winde

Pressure on hospitals 

“The Covid pressure has eased considerably in the Cape metro and more recently in the rural districts. We previously reported that there was pressure in Garden Route and George hospitals. That pressure is starting to now subside as well. There is even some spare critical care capacity available in those rural regional hospitals.” — Dr Keith Cloete