Wednesday, 28 April 2021

Bloemfontein: Premier Sefora Ntombela said the Free State province is currently in the 3rd wave of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Over the past few days, the province has seen a sharp increase in new infections and casualties. The latest statistics paint a grim picture of the impact of the virus in the province.

As of Tuesday, 27 April 2021, statistics for the Free State were as follows:

  • A total of 88 006 cases, with 182 of these recorded in the last 24 hours;
  • Three thousand, eight hundred and thirty nine (3 839) deaths; the total case fatality rate is 4.4%, which means that 4.4% of the people who have contracted the virus in the Free State, have died;
  • Eighty one thousand, three hundred and forty one (81 341) people have successfully recovered. This makes up a 92% recovery rate; and
  • 41% of the positive cases are from the Mangaung Metropolitan Municipality, with an aggressive increase in the number of new cases in Thabo Mofutsanyana district municipality.

Premier Ntombela attributed the increase in new infections to a number of factors, key amongst them being non-compliance with COVID-19 regulations. The Premier further added that such behavior kicked into effect a chain reaction which has unfortunately resulted in the increase in new infections and sadly deaths resulting from the disease.

The resumption of Sisonke Vaccination programme at facilities across the country will hopefully arrest the further spread of the virus.

Premier Ntombela also said the Department of Health has already vaccinated 18 080 Healthcare Workers, which constitutes just above 50% of known Healthcare Workers in the Free State.

There are currently 11 registered vaccination sites and Premier Ntombela said government aims to turn all hospitals to be vaccination sites as quickly as possible.

“My biggest concern at the moment, is that we now know for sure that in the Free State, we are experiencing the beginning of the 3rd wave. Just in the past 14 days, we have recorded 3 170 new cases; a steady increase in the number of deaths and the number of people being admitted into our hospitals. It is now important that we reactivate the measures we were taking right at the beginning of the outbreak,”

“We need to make sure our intergovernmental collaboration is against strengthened. I am concerned that our people have not been adhering to lockdown regulations such as the curfew; number of people allowed in public places at a particular time and mass gatherings at social events such as parties. We need the police and other stakeholders to really be aggressive in assisting us.” Premier Ntombela said.

She also appealed to citizens of the province to continue washing hands, use of sanitizers and practicing social distancing.