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Eastern Cape concerned about scattered cluster COVID-19 infections

The Eastern Cape has raised concerns about scattered cluster infections of COVID-19 that may put pressure on the healthcare system of the province.

This as the province anticipates a second surge of the coronavirus. The provincial government is now focusing on the state of hospital infrastructure and Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) sufficiency as they were the main issues when COVID-19 hit the province.

The focus is on the Bhisho Hospital as it is treating the patients from the cluster outbreak from Walter Sisulu and Fort Hare universities. The hospital also took ownership of a critical donation as it prepares for the second wave.

COVID-19 cases are yet again rising in the Eastern Cape.

Bhisho Hospital is now one of the quarantine sites in the province as it gears for a second wave.

This hospital was under pressure during the peak. However, to improve the capacity of the hospital, Gift of the Givers has donated 100 beds and 30 high nasal oxygen machines and supplementary PPE.

“Due to this donation, the hospital was able to open the COVID-19 ward. At this moment, they have plus-minus 50 patients and if it wasn’t for the donation from us as a partnership with this hospital, this would have not been possible,” says Gift of the Givers co-ordinator, Corene Conradie.

There is also an increase in the number of cases in the Joe Gqabi District Municipality:

Infections at universities

Walter Sisulu and Fort Hare University’s rising number of infections triggered fears and disrupted academic activities.

“As a university, we have to juggle things around. We have to protect our staff and students by restricting their movements as much as possible hence we have had to suspend our academic and administrative activities in Buffalo City campuses only,” says Walter Sisulu Spokesperson, Yonela Tukwayo.

Fort Hare says it might have to lock the campus down to certain groups of people.

“We don’t think we will send people home. We are not going to do that. The people we talked to don’t advise that. What we might do is lock the campus down and refuse entry and exit to certain groups,” says Fort Hare Vice-Chancellor, Sakhela Buhlungu.

State of readiness for second wave

Provincial Health Department Spokesperson, Siyanda Manana says the department is ready for any eventuality.

“The Eastern Cape Health Department is very much prepared for the pending second wave. We have the human resource in terms of nurses and community healthcare workers that are recruited in huge numbers. They are deployed in our hospitals to look after our patients.”

The Gift of the Givers is expected to further donate to 30 hospitals in the province.

Below are the latest coronavirus stats:



Author -Amanda Xhala

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