Zweli Mkhize KZN Gauteng hot-spot

Photo: Zweli Mkhize / Twitter

Mkhize warning: KZN may ‘take over Gauteng’ as SA’s virus hot-spot

After the Western Cape and Gauteng were ravaged by COVID-19, Zweli Mkhize has made a grim prediction about KZN becoming the next hot-spot.

Zweli Mkhize KZN Gauteng hot-spot

Photo: Zweli Mkhize / Twitter

Zweli Mkhize has warned that KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) is the next location on his radar, after a rise in the infection rate sounded the government’s alarm bells. The health minister has warned that the province could soon ‘take over from Gauteng‘ in terms of having the top rates of COVID-19 transmission.

Why KZN may become the next ‘COVID-19 hot-spot’ in South Africa

The stats certainly suggest that Mkhize’s fears are well-founded. Only Gauteng has more active cases than KZN, and the later has so far reported 31 744 unresolved positive tests – that makes up 19% of the cumulative active cases across South Africa. A total of 416 people have died so far in this province.

One of South Africa’s first COVID-19 cases was reported in KwaZulu-Natal, and despite recording a steady uptick in numbers, the region never encountered the same devastating outbreaks which were seen in the Western Cape and Gauteng respectively. But, as Zweli Mkhize has foreshadowed, that could soon change.

Zweli Mkhize seeks to ‘bulk-up’ bed capacity in KwaZulu-Natal

The top priority now is to ensure that all hospitals and health facilities have enough beds to deal with any potential localised surges in COVID-19 patients. Minister Mkhize confirmed that his department would enter into discussions with their regional counterparts in KZN to ensure that they are ‘prepared for the storm’:

“We are watching and looking at the trends and certainly Gauteng is at the top of rate of infection. KZN is taking over now and we’ll need to reach out to them so they don’t get caught up with the numbers.”

“We will discuss with KZN the issue of having enough beds and oxygen for patients. The turnaround times should also be reduced. Our clinicians are on top of their game and they have good enough experience.”

Zweli Mkhize