Western Cape Health MEC Nomafrench Mbombo is calling for community support as health workers begin screening for COVID-19. They are conducting door-to-door visits in Mbekweni, outside Paarl.

The Drakenstein Municipality has provided loudhailers for awareness and to encourage residents to come forward for the screening.

In the video below, the Western Cape is under the spotlight in the first week of the national lockdown: 

Mbombo says her department is targeting high density areas as local transmissions seem to be rising.

“We have seen that the cases are no longer in one place, but are scattered throughout; whether it’s Cape Flats, whether township, whether suburbs. Hence we make sure now that we go to the communities that wouldn’t voluntarily go to the GP or private labs because, currently in the whole of South Africa, the numbers that we keep on sharing are the numbers that are mostly coming from the private labs. So we’ve never tested the magnitude of the virus in our public health users.”

Food relief programmes boost

The Department of Social Development in the Western Cape has made an additional R35 million available for food relief programmes.

The project aims to provide more than 210 000 people with cooked meals and food parcels amid the COVID-19 outbreak.

Provincial Social Development Minister Sharna Fernandez says they have strict qualifying criteria in place.

“Households affected by COVID-19 infections in the following instances. A member/s of the family who tested positive for the virus and are in isolation in their homes. A household where a member of the family who tested positive for the virus and who have insufficient means to sustain themselves during the lockdown period. A person who is on medication or who suffers from a chronic illness and have insufficient means to sustain themselves, and was assessed,” says Fernandez.