#CoronavirusSA: NW prioritises Covid-19 screening and testing

#CoronavirusSA: NW prioritises Covid-19 screening and testingAn elderly North West woman being screened for Covid-19:Credit(North West Health Department)

Health officials in the North West province are working tirelessly to ensure that the Covid-19 screening and testing campaign is a success.

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Community members have responded positively to the screening and testing. Lerato Modisakgotla from Danville in Mahikeng tells Health-e News that she is happy to know that she is asymptomatic.

“I am happy to have met with health officials in my area because I have been sitting home and worried about my status. Every day I watch the news and see the numbers rising and this made me worried about my status. The process went very well and the health officials were very kind. I was also given tips on how to take care of myself and family during this time of outbreak.”

At the time of writing, 588 000 people across the province had been screened with 24 Covid-19  positive cases and 13 recoveries. 

Please get tested 

Health MEC, Madoda Sambatha has urged the public to be screened and tested. “We are calling for people to all come out for screening, especially in those areas that reflect as high. Our provincial epicentre is Bojanala District. In Bojanala our district epicentre is Rustenburg, especially Tlhabane and Geelhout Park.

“We are calling for people especially those in the two settlements to all come out in their numbers for screening and those that show symptoms will be referred for testing. This will help to curb further transmission,” says Sambatha.

The MEC encourages people to adhere to lockdown regulations of staying at home and observing social distancing as that will help curb further spread.

Provincial health spokesperson, Tebogo Lekgethwane explains that they have not encountered any challenges during the screening and he says they will be visiting all villages, towns and cities across the province.

“The roll out of mass screening, testing and contact tracing for Covid-19 is continuing across the province. We are urging all community members to stay within their jurisdiction because our fieldworkers will come to them. Those that show symptoms will be referred to local clinics or mobile facilitates for testing.”

Coordinated strategy and response 

Earlier this month, President Cyril Ramaphosa had announced that 10 000 fieldworkers will be employed to roll out mass screening. “Over the next two weeks, we will roll out the community screening and testing programme across all provinces, focusing in particular on highly vulnerable communities.

“Those who test positive and cannot self-isolate at home will be isolated at special facilities that have been identified and are now being equipped. At all times, we will observe the human rights of all people,” says Ramaphosa.

Ramaphosa urged citizens not to discriminate against those who have tested positive for the virus and announced that a world class information centre will be used to keep up to date with the latest figures.

“To ensure that our strategies are effectively coordinated and to ensure they are informed by comprehensive, real-time data, we have established the Covid-19 Information Centre at the  Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR). This world-class centre will keep track of all screening, testing, isolation and hospitalisation throughout the country,” Ramaphosa says.

Meanwhile, the North West health department has taken a decision to place all patients who have tested positive for Covid-19 under government supervision to prevent further spread of the virus.
This decision comes after three patients could not be traced at the addresses which they provided. – Health-e News

For more information on Covid-19 in South Africa, you can call the toll-free line on 0800 029 999, or you can send a message that says “Hi” on WhatsApp to the number 060 012 3456. You can also visit the SA Coronavirus website.