The Western Cape is reportedly witnessing 135 new COVID-19 cases, 20 hospital admissions and two deaths daily, on average.
According to IOL, this was revealed by Health Department Head, Dr Keith Cloete this week.
“Based on all our data, I would like to issue a strong message to the residents of our province: there is no doubt that we will experience a third wave and we simply cannot relax.
“This is based not only on international experience, where in some countries the third wave is well established, but also on data from other provinces within our country,” said Winde.
The National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD) on Wednesday raised alarm over a spike in COVID-19 cases in at least three provinces.
The NICD reported that there had been an upsurge in cases in the North West, Free State and Northern Cape.
According to the latest statistics from the Health Ministry, the Northern Cape’s cumulative cases increased to 38 183, the North West’s increased to 66 023 and the Free State’s increased to 86 202.
“The team is working with the respective provinces to ascertain whether the rise in cases can be attributed to cluster outbreaks and recommend increased testing and contact tracing to contain the situation and limit further spread,” said senior epidemiologist at the NICD Dr Harry Moultrie.
The Western Cape was set to begin the mass vaccination campaign on May 17.
A total of 53 507 out of the 53 820 vaccines received to date as part of the Sisonke trial, had been administered by April 21.
Funerals and bars
“Our goal is to vaccinate as many residents as possible, as quickly as possible, to mitigate the severity of the coming third wave,” Winde said.
Funerals and bars remained a major concern, driving most of the COVID-19 clusters in the province.
“Because of relatively high levels of protection from previous infections, we expect the third wave to be lower than the second, but it is conditional. It is conditional on the behaviour of the broader society. So if we behave responsibly, we could potentially have a lower second wave.
“We can delay the onset of the third wave, mitigate the intensity of the third wave, through a strong behavioural response,” Cloete was quoted as saying.
Picture: Cape Town etc gallery