The National Department of Health’s laboratories can no longer keep up with all the tests done for the coronavirus.
Western Cape Prime Minister Alan Winde says more and more tests are being done in the Western Cape and the Department of Health handles most of the tests.
The National Health Laboratory Service (NHLS) is responsible for the results, but according to Winde is no longer able to give all the results timely.
In the Western Cape, 19 619 tests were conducted between 27 April and 4 May. In the last two weeks, the number of tests has increased sharply, but it has an impact on the NHLS in the province, as well as nationwide, to give the results as soon as possible.
Winde says this means that test results cannot be communicated regularly.
He plans to address the issue with Pres. Cyril Ramaphosa, as well as Dr. Health Minister Zweli Mkhize to ask for the NHLS’s capacity for testing to be increased. This is especially necessary as more and more tests will be conducted nationwide.
Winde says results will need to be made faster so that the data is processed and the patterns of infection noticed.
Winde said in the Western Cape the number of cases of people infected with the coronavirus is now rising faster. This means that there is infection from one person to another in communities and that the curve of the rising number of infections is now rising faster.
He reiterated that the infections were noted especially at certain points such as supermarkets and other places that provided essential level 5 services.
Furthermore, there is a growth in infection with the virus in Cape Town in particular and then also in the Witzenberg district. Some of the major towns in this district are Ceres, Tulbagh and Wolseley.
Windes asked people to be extra careful. He said people should remember the level 5 containment did not stop the coronavirus, but it only won time so that the government could better prepare for a large number of infections.