The Garden Route, which was officially named a COVID-19 hotspot on December 14, has passed its peak and is now on a sustained downward trajectory.

The Western Cape Government confirmed the news during a weekly digital press conference on Tuesday [January 5], noting that the district is experiencing a decline in both cases and hospitalisations.  

The critical care capacity in the Garden Route district, however, still remains under pressure, and there was a week-on-week increase in deaths in this district.

“With the exception of the West Coast District, which remains on an upward trajectory (although slower) all rural districts are showing signs of stabilisation, and we are waiting to see whether the slower relay of data over public holidays is the reason for this and whether the pattern holds in the week ahead,” said Premier Alan Winde in a statement.

The healthcare system still remains under extreme pressure, as this new, more transmissible variant has resulted in significantly more hospitalisations than was experienced in the first wave. More beds have been added to assist the surge and help relieve some pressure.

The Western Cape has also secured an additional supply of oxygen to ensure there is adequate capacity for the peak.

The combined oxygen utilisation in the Western Cape, including both public and private hospitals, is 76.4 tons. Contingency plans have been put in place to ensure that this supply has been increased to 95 tons per day. This includes 5 bulk oxygen tankers delivering oxygen this week.

Picture: George Travel Information

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