It was March 2020, a year ago, when South Africa reported the first case of COVID-19, and the Level 5 lockdown was introduced. But still we experienced the spread of COVID-19. The restrictions like social distancing, wearing of masks and washing of hands were introduced to our daily life. Everyone voluntarily complied with these type of orders to allow some ability for government to regulate movement of people and closure of businesses in order to slow the spread of COVID-19.
Looking at the numbers of cases and how things evolved over time, COVID-19 cases and deaths are started increasing daily again. With the second wave the case-load rose to at least 30% more than the previous peak’s case-load. The contributing factors were the relaxing of restrictions to stimulate economic growth and the commencement of domestic and international travel in light of the approaching festive season.
If indeed the third wave hits us soon and it is deadlier than the last ones, the level of restrictions will have to be commensurate to the risk level. The government will have to play its part and ensure that communities are supported so that they don’t have to risk their lives in order to earn a living.
The Gauteng Community Health Care Forum calls on all our communities to observe restrictions and to practice COVID-19 safety by social distancing, wearing a mask and sanitising or washing hands regularly. Communities must take their safety into their own hands!
This statement was issued by the Gauteng Community Health Care Forum on 1 April 2021.