[imagesource: Reuters / Mike Hutchings]
As of last night, South Africa has 24 264 confirmed coronavirus cases, and 524 deaths.
The Western Cape, and Cape Town, in particular, is struggling with outbreaks in a number of hotspots, with two proving to be especially worrying.
In the Khayelitsha sub-district, with a population of just over 400 000, more than 2 000 people have tested positive in the 66 days since the first case was reported.
According to TimesLIVE, there is a similar ‘one in 200’ infection rate in the neighbouring Klipfontein sub-district, which includes Delft, Delft South, Gugulethu, Nyanga and Manenberg. Out of the 380 000 combined residents, 1 934 have tested positive.
There are also infection hotspots in Philippi, and Hout Bay’s Imizamo Yethu:
Overall, Cape Town had 559 new reported Covid-19 cases on Tuesday, bringing the total to 13,746, which means the city is home to 87% of infections in the Western Cape and 58% of all infections nationally…
Fifty-two new deaths in the Western Cape brought its total to 357, which is 74% of the national total of 457.
The extent to which the Western Cape is the centre of the country’s Covid-19 outbreak is illustrated in a National Institute for Communicable Diseases report based on data from 204 hospitals – 150 private and 54 public nationwide – up to May 24.
The province dominates every category listed, and is responsible for 73% of all patients on ventilators.
Doctors across some of the city’s hospitals have spoken about preparing for ‘the horror’ that’s coming, and I can’t imagine many were impressed with last night’s announcement that religious gatherings of up to 50 people will be allowed from June 1.
There was also some confusion yesterday when Minister of Health Dr Zweli Mkhize spoke about certain areas and the need for alert level 4.
For example, News24 reported on Mkhize’s presentation by saying “Covid-19 hotspots could remain at Level 4 as the country moves to Level 3 on 1 June, with the possibility they could be moved to a hard lockdown if measures to curtail the spread of the virus fail”.
TimesLIVE seemed to echo that, stating “As the country gears towards moving down to lockdown level 3 on June 1, districts classified as hotspots could return to level 4”.
However, that directly contradicts President Rampahosa’s statements on Sunday night, that the entire country would drop to alert level 3 on June 1, with a re-evaluation to be done two weeks later.
Mkhize’s comments led to great consternation overnight, and as of yet, no clarity has been offered.
What we do know is that the country’s hotspots will be designated in one of three ways, reports BusinessTech:
Areas of ‘vigilance’ (less than 5 cases per 100,000 people);
Emerging hotspots (less than 5 cases per 100,000 people, but rapid rise);
Hotspots (more than 5 cases per 100,000 people).
Mkhize said that active cases and changes in active cases over 14 days will be used to determine the changes in rate of infection.
Using data from May 16 through to May 22, Mkhize presented a list of districts across the country showing these various designations:
The latest data shows that 14 of South Africa’s 52 districts are considered hotspots, while nine have been identified as emerging hotspots.
Mkhize said that this is based on a number of active case per 100,000 between 16 May and 22 May.
His department calculated ‘the delta’ or new positive cases by subtracting the number of cases reported on 15 May from the reported cases on 22 May. It also calculated the % change in new positive cases between the same two days.
Here’s the table in full, with the red down the bottom illustrating the dire situation in the Cape:
For more on how the hotspot interventions will work, read the full BusinessTech article here.
A word from Mkhize, or President Ramaphosa, or anybody in power, to clear up any potential confusion around what happens on June 1 would be more than welcome.
[imagesource: Property24] If you haven't been to Langebaan and dragged your name throug...
This year, Learning Disability Week will run from June 20 to June 26 with the focus being ...
[imagesource:here] The atrocities that took place in Mozambique last year are still fre...
[imagesource: Getty] American TikTok star Charli D’Amelio used to have the most follo...
[imagesource:here] Ben Stokes' reign as permanent England test captain is off to a winn...