- The Eastern Cape healthcare system is under pressure as hospitals are filling up
- The province has requested assistance from President Cyril Ramaphosa and on Sunday SANDF personnel arrived in the province
- More military personnel are expected to arrive the in province in phases
The Eastern Cape province is feeling the full effects of the Covid-19 virus as hospitals become full with the pandemic yet to reach its peak.
Two special advisers to the provincial health department called for urgent steps to avoid a catastrophe, including the possibility of transporting Covid-19 patients from other regions to the two field hospitals in Nelson Mandela Bay, said HeraldLIVE.
The special advisers, former health MEC Dr Bevan Goqwana and Dr Siva Pillay, a former health department superintendent-general, said both private and public hospitals were overflowing with Covid-19 patients.
Goqwana is assisting the OR Tambo district’s joint operations centre and Pillay is assisting in the Sarah Baartman district and Nelson Mandela Bay joint operations centres.
They agreed something had to be done immediately to prevent a catastrophe.
Briefly.co.za reported that Eastern Cape Premier Oscar Mabuyane wrote to President Cyril Ramaphosa asking for assistance in the province as they were overwhelmed.
SANDF medical personnel has been deployed to the province to try and help South Africa's poorest province cope with the pandemic.
SA Military Health Service (SAMHS) spokesperson Priscilla Lengoasa told said the personnel arrived on Sunday and more military workers were expected to be deployed in phases to the province, said News24.
Goqwana has suggested to Mabuyane that patients from other regions be transported to the two field hospitals in Port Elizabeth: Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium field hospital, which has 1,500 beds, and the VW field hospital, which has 4 000 beds.
The premier also asked Ramaphosa to reinstate the alcohol ban in the province because alcohol linked trauma cases are putting a strain on the healthcare system.
The Eastern Cape currently has 35 684 confirmed Covid-19 cases and 519 deaths.
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