Every time there is a relaxation of alcohol restrictions, trauma cases increase - sometimes by more than 100 percent according to what Western Cape health authorities have been observing since last year. eNCA's Ayesha Ismail reports. Courtesy of #DStv403
CAPE TOWN - With the second wave of COVID-19 behind the Western Cape now, there has been a significant decrease in new cases, hospitalisations and deaths.
Health authorities have noted an increase in trauma cases, most of them alcohol-related.
Every time there is a relaxation of alcohol restrictions, trauma cases increase - sometimes by more than 100 percent - according to Western Cape health authorities' observations since last year.
They say while they are pleased about the drop in COVID-19 infections, they are concerned about the rise in trauma cases and are hoping the alcohol restrictions over the Easter weekend will relieve the pressure on trauma units.
Keith Cloete, Head of Department at Western Cape government, said, “what we expect is a plateauing of those cases over Easter. We don’t expect a massive drop of the cases over Easter."
"But we definitely expect an impact and it's more of a blunting impact in terms of where it would have had high spikes, that it would be slightly lower and blunted over Easter.”
Cloete said in the meantime they have been informed about new COVID-19 cases in the Cape Metro.
Cloete said, “the increase cases in the metro we are watching very carefully… to try and understand whether these cases are the start of a cluster that could potentially trigger bigger clusters. At this point in time we are watching it vigilantly we have not picked up specific clusters but it does not mean that over this weekend or early into next week that it cannot develop into clusters so we are taking it very seriously.”
Cloete says they want to delay the onset of the third wave so that it does not happen in early April.
"We would want to delay the onset of the third wave we would want to delay that it does not happen early in April."
“We want to delay it to the end of April and if possible push it into May."
"If we can vaccinate people over the age of sixty and get a significant number of people vaccinated before we start peaking into a third wave we will make a big impact in terms of the most vulnerable for people with severe disease that will require hospitalization and oxygen," he said.