Covid-19: Western Cape cases keep dropping, but no sign of leaving third wave yet, say health officials

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Covid-19 cases in the Western Cape have shown a continued decrease, but the province still has a long way to go before it exits the third wave of infections, health officials say.
Covid-19 cases in the Western Cape have shown a continued decrease, but the province still has a long way to go before it exits the third wave of infections, health officials say.
Brenton Geach
  • Covid-19 cases in the Western Cape have continued to decline, health officials say.
  • However, the province has not yet exited the third wave of infections and is not likely to in the next week.
  • The Cape Town metro has seen a 41% week-on-week decrease in cases.

Covid-19 cases in the Western Cape have shown a continued decrease, but the province still has a long way to go before it exits the third wave of infections, health officials have said.

In a digital briefing on Thursday, Western Cape Department of Health COO Dr Saadiq Kariem said case numbers "continue on the downward trend".

There are 1 505 new diagnoses each day on average, and admissions and deaths have started to decrease steadily. There are, on average, 215 new admissions and around 65 deaths each day.

At the peak of the third wave, there were more than 360 new admissions and more than 120 new deaths on average daily, Kariem said.

READ | More unvaccinated health workers have died compared to vaccinated ones - Western Cape health dept

"Overall, there is a 41% week-on-week decrease in cases in the metro. All subdistricts [have seen] significant decreases in weekly cases over the last week. There is a similar decrease in case numbers across the rural districts," said Kariem.

However, the province will only exit the third wave once cases reach around 530 a day, he said. So far, only Gauteng and Limpopo have exited the third wave.

Modelling shows the province has only a 20% likelihood of exiting the third wave in the next week.

Kariem added: 

We have now passed the peak of the third wave with signs of continuous decline, but urge everyone to adhere strictly to protective behaviours, to contain it over the coming weeks.

As cases drop, the province has begun lobbying for more relaxed lockdown regulations, according to Premier Alan Winde.

Winde lobbied for the end of the national state of disaster in a National Coronavirus Command Council (NCCC) and President's Coordinating Council (PCC) meeting on Tuesday.

READ | Third wave of Covid-19 infections showing signs of a downward trend - experts

"We've got a world-class response to Covid-19. It's time to focus on clawing back jobs," he said.

"We've got a smart system that doesn't need a disaster declaration."

News24 previously reported that an announcement from President Cyril Ramaphosa on an Alert Level 2 lockdown was imminent.

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