The number of COVID-19 cases associated with the ‘super-spreader’ event at the popular Tin Roof bar in Claremont has risen to 73 as of Thursday, October 14. This was an increase from the 63 cases reported by Western Cape Premier Alan Winde on Tuesday. According to a News24 report, ‘all but two are experiencing mild symptoms’.
“In total, 73 cases have now been confirmed. This means contact tracing of 73 households are currently being done,” said Mark van der Heever, the Western Cape Department of Health Deputy Director of Communications.
“Again, the data is emerging and will be updated as soon as confirmation is received.”
Two of the 73 were hospitalised and one was discharged after a brief stay, according to van der Heever.
The ‘super-spreader’ event caused panic at Western Cape schools because 37 of those originally infected were high school learners. This set a mass communication campaign in motion to remind pupils of COVID-19 protocols.
“An important message that needs to be landed is that young people also have a role to play in preventing new COVID-19 infections,” said van der Heever.
“Even if they are at lower risk of a severe COVID-19 illness.”
In the wake of the high school infections, the Western Cape Department of Education stressed that if a similar event occurred during the National Senior Certificate exams learners could risk delaying their matric until June next year.
“Matrics who test positive during exams will not be able to write them this year,” said Kerry Mauchline spokesperson to Debbie Schäfer, the Education MEC.
The event is not an indication that the Western Cape is experiencing a second wave, according to Alan Winde.
“It is one cluster that demonstrates the potential for spread that continues even while our hospitalisations and deaths stabilise,” said Winde.
“We are nevertheless extremely worried that this particular event is indicative of younger residents not adhering to the important behaviours we need to prevent a new spike of infections. It is also indicative of some establishments not following the important health and safety guidelines.”
News24 reports that another such cluster linked to a funeral has been identified but more information was not immediately available.
On Tuesday [October 14] the Western Cape has 113 424 confirmed COVID-19 cases, 105 510 recoveries and 4276 deaths.