The third wave of Covid-19, which is driven by Gauteng, will spread to other provinces. This is the warning from acting health minister Mmamoloko Kubayi-Ngubane, who was addressing the media.
“There should be no sense of complacency in other provinces, which are all demonstrating upward trajectories. The wave in Gauteng will inevitably spill over into the rest of the country,” the minister said on Friday.
Gauteng remains the epicentre of the pandemic and accounts for the majority of new cases. “I wish to open this press briefing first by acknowledging the grave situation we find ourselves in as a country, as we battle a third wave of the Covid-19 pandemic,” she said.
The seven-day moving average graph shows that, in Gauteng, the current wave has passed the first two. On Thursday, Gauteng premier David Makhura said one in three people in the province who go for a Covid-19 test is “likely” to have the virus.
In the meantime, the acting minister said the national department of health has activated its surge response, which is executed together with the World Health Organisation (WHO) surge team deployed in the country.
The department has also employed 10 intervention areas that provinces must adopt to aid in the resurgence preparations and response.
These include governance and leadership, medical supplies, port and environmental health, epidemiology, facility readiness, case management, risk communication and community engagement, occupational health and safety, infection prevention and control, and human resources.
Also, the department will continue to monitor daily infections, hospital admissions, mortality rate, oxygen availability, personal protective equipment (PPE) availability and medicine supply.
“Where there are challenges, we alert the province to the impending risk and encourage them to address the matter,” she said. “Yesterday, we had a meeting with Gauteng to confront the pressure they are facing with this wave and comprehensively deal with the drivers of this current wave, strategic case management and effective containment measures.”
She said she will be meeting with the Ministerial Advisory Committee on Covid-19 on Saturday about issues that need critical and urgent intervention.