Covid-19: Acting health minister 'happy' with Gauteng's response to third wave

play article
Subscribers can listen to this article
Mmamoloko Kubayi-Ngubane.
Mmamoloko Kubayi-Ngubane.
  • Acting Health Minister Mmamoloko Kubayi-Ngubane says she's happy with Gauteng's response to the third wave of the Covid-19 pandemic.
  • Gauteng is the epicentre of the country's third wave of infections.
  • The National Coronavirus Command Council will meet with the health department next week to decide whether to impose additional lockdown restrictions.

Acting health minister Mmamoloko Kubayi-Ngubane says so far, the national department is happy with Gauteng authorities' response to the third wave of Covid-19 infections.

"With the report we received [on Thursday from Gauteng], we are happy. We have put together teams from national and province to assist Gauteng. When we see gaps, we will give the necessary support," she said

The province is the epicentre of South Africa's third wave and on Thursday, it recorded 9 521 new cases.

Premier David Makhura has expressed a need for more medical staff.

READ | Gauteng Covid-19 surge will spill over to other provinces - acting health minister

Healthcare workers in the province have been complaining about a shortage of bed capacity and oxygen, and of being overworked. 

But Kubayi-Ngubane said: "No one has reported challenges with oxygen supply. We received a report that Gauteng was fine and there are enough beds, and then clinicians on the ground said otherwise.

"What we discovered is that the private sector is the one that is 100% under pressure. What we did not do is have a clear overflow between private and public facilities. That has been sorted out."

She said the closure of Charlotte Maxeke Johannesburg Academic Hospital after a fire broke out there, put additional pressure on the province. Parts of the hospital will reopen on Monday. Authorities also closed the Nasrec field hospital after the first wave. 

Kubayi-Ngubane added that provincial departments would have to make their own assessments on whether to reopen field hospitals. 

The health department is meeting the National Coronavirus Command Council to discuss additional interventions to curb the spread of the disease. Gauteng has asked for tighter restrictions to be imposed.

"We are monitoring the country in terms of the rising numbers. The introduction of the restrictions in all provinces has assisted in curbing the numbers. We are appealing for enforcements."

Do you want to know more about this topic? Sign up for one of News24's 33 newsletters to receive the information you want in your inbox. Special newsletters are available to subscribers.

We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For 14 free days, you can have access to a world of in-depth analyses, investigative journalism, top opinions and a range of features. Journalism strengthens democracy. Invest in the future today. Thereafter you will be billed R75 per month. You can cancel anytime and if you cancel within 14 days you won't be billed. 
Subscribe to News24
Voting Booth
The ANC's leadership race is heating up. Who do you think will be elected party president at Nasrec in December?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma has got it in the bag
7% - 50 votes
I foresee a second term for Cyril Ramaphosa
82% - 598 votes
Don’t discount a Zweli Mkhize win
11% - 78 votes
Rand - Dollar
Rand - Pound
Rand - Euro
Rand - Aus dollar
Rand - Yen
Brent Crude
Top 40
All Share
Resource 10
Industrial 25
Financial 15
All JSE data delayed by at least 15 minutes Iress logo
Editorial feedback and complaints

Contact the public editor with feedback for our journalists, complaints, queries or suggestions about articles on News24.