WATCH | Doctor fighting on coronavirus frontline says it is both exhausting and rewarding

  • Dr Mumtaz Abbas, a specialist family physician in Northern Tygerberg, regularly tests and screens people for Covid-19.
  • She says working during the pandemic is demanding and exhausting, but messages of support from patients and loved ones remind her it is worthwhile.
  • Abbas says her goal is to keep her community safe. 


Working during the Covid-19 pandemic is both exhausting and demanding, says Dr Mumtaz Abbas - but it is through these tough times she feels she is really living her true passion.

"It's a time of great sacrifice for all of us, and I'm constantly reminding myself why I'm doing what I'm doing. I keep having to press into what my purpose is and what I am trying to achieve, and my goal is to keep my community safe," she said.

Abbas, 35, is a specialist family physician at a primary health care clinic in Northern Tygerberg. She fulfils a diverse portfolio of managing systems and people, training staff and teaching students. 

INFOGRAPHICS | The extent of the Western Cape Covid-19 outbreak

She and her team have set up a special Covid-19 screening and testing clinic, which services Bishop Lavis in Cape Town as part of the Western Cape Department of Health's initiative to "stop the spread".

Residents have free access to screening, and depending on whether they are displaying Covid-19 symptoms, free testing as well. 

Abbas' team is also doing door-to-door screening and testing in areas where Covid-19-positive patients are located.

She said there were times she felt demotivated, and she hardly had time for herself.

"There are times where I feel really down, overworked and really stretched. It's as if you can't switch off."
Dr Mumtaz Abbas

In these times, Abbas is most grateful for the many messages of support from friends, family, residents and patients.

These messages, she said, "make it all worth it". 

Lockdown For
DAYS
HRS
MINS
Voting Booth
A few positive Covid-19 cases have been confirmed at two SA rugby franchises.. Should teams proceed with return to training protocols?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Results
Yes, SA rugby is already behind the eight ball compared to New Zealand and Australia
14% - 173 votes
It’s too dangerous, the country is only now heading into the Covid-19 storm!
41% - 515 votes
Get the ball rolling, Covid-19 is here to stay as the 'new normal'
45% - 570 votes
Vote
ZAR/USD
16.84
(-0.27)
ZAR/GBP
21.15
(+0.32)
ZAR/EUR
19.11
(-0.58)
ZAR/AUD
11.69
(-0.14)
ZAR/JPY
0.16
(+0.06)
Gold
1802.44
(+0.14)
Silver
19.07
(+1.63)
Platinum
826.18
(+0.59)
Brent Crude
43.02
(0.00)
Palladium
1965.00
(+0.71)
All Share
56199.46
(+1.41)
Top 40
51874.81
(+1.41)
Financial 15
10703.82
(+2.21)
Industrial 25
76910.63
(+1.02)
Resource 10
53327.86
(+1.61)
All JSE data delayed by at least 15 minutes morningstar logo