We must pull out all stops to save lives: Ramaphosa

President Cyril Rampahosa will visit the Western Cape this morning to assess the readiness of the province in response to the COVID19 pandemic. The province is the epicenter of the outbreak with more than 27000 confirmed cases and over 600 deaths.

CAPE TOWN  - President Cyril Ramaphosa spent Friday in the Western Cape where the provincial response to the COVID-19 pandemic was presented to him.

The Western Cape government updated the president on the provincial health system’s level of preparedness to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic and on the province’s hotspot strategy and implementation plan.

At 27,006 confirmed cases, the province is South Africa’s epicentre.

READ: COVID-19: Western Cape changes testing policy

Ramaphosa said he is pleased that the Western Cape provincial government is working hard to deal with COVID-19.

The president also addressed the issue of staffing in the province, saying they would not accept cost as an excuse.

"Money is not a problem and I will not accept a lack of staff as an excuse. We must pull out all stops to save lives,"  Ramaphosa said.

READ: SA sees record jump in coronavirus cases

The province has said it will be bringing in 2,162 beds in the public sector for acute hospitalisation.

Western Cape authorities said there is a backlog of 27,000 across the NHLS labs as well as a challenge with staffing in the Public Health sector.

Health Minister Dr Zweli Mkhize agreed with the presentation.

"We have sent about 28 Cuban doctors to this province to give support," Mkhize said and promised to clear the testing backlog with a shipment of testing kits that are clearing customs.

- Coronavirus Hotline Number: 0800 029 999 from 8am to 4pm, Monday to Friday.

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The NICD has another Clinician Hotline to improve #COVID19 communication and support for healthcare providers. The Clinician Hotline is 0800 11 1131, operating 24 hrs. The Public Hotline is 0800 029 999 also operating 24hrs.


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