As we watch the number of infections rise further – probably far faster than most of us imagined – we should be concerned, but not alarmed, President Cyril Ramaphosa said on Monday.
Writing in his Monday morning address, entitled From The Desk of the President, Ramaphosa said: “That is because we have the ability, as individuals, communities and as a country, to limit the impact of the disease on our people.”
Over the course of the coming week, he said the country can expect the total number of cases to pass the 50,000 mark. “Sadly, we are also likely to record the 1,000th death from this devastating disease.”
“As we have shown, we can slow the spread of the disease, and we should continue to take all measures possible to continue to flatten the infection curve. Most importantly, we must be prepared to reduce the number of deaths by implementing the necessary health measures,” he wrote.
“Working with our social partners, we in government are working hard to prepare for the increase of infections. We have been buying personal protection equipment from across the world and supporting local companies to produce them here. We have been improving the infrastructure in hospitals and setting up temporary hospitals and finding more beds for COVID-19 patients.
“We have deployed tens of thousands of community health workers to detect cases in areas where people live. We are intensifying the programme of screening, testing, contact tracing and, where necessary, isolation.
Although we have made progress, we still need to do much more in the coming weeks to meet the expected demand.”