Vaccination is the best answer for new sub-variant
The MEC of Western Cape Department of Health and Wellness, Dr Nomafrench Mbombo, encourages people to remain calm and careful, in the light of the Covid-19 XBB.1.5 sub-variant. “Our Department continues to monitor the Covid-19 situation in our province, and we will alert the public if we see a rise in hospitalisations or deaths. Our systems are still in place to monitor the situation. Right now there is no cause for alarm.”
The daily Covid-19 numbers in the Western Cape show a total number of 349 active cases reported. We currently have a total of 21 people admitted to hospital, and a total of 3 in ICU. No deaths were reported today, with a total of 1 death reported in the last 7 days.
The National Department of Health confirmed in its briefing today the detection of the new sub-variant of the Omicron variant, and confirmed that there would be no immediate changes in protocols and no travel restrictions. Currently there is no confirmed evidence that XBB.1.5 is more severe or causes more severe disease than other variants. The mitigation efforts include increased surveillance and testing, with a renewed focus on the vaccination programme. The case was detected by the Centre for Genomic Surveillance at the University of Stellenbosch as part of the national and international sequencing network. While it was detected locally, samples are randomized and there is no clear confirmation that the sample was from the Western Cape.
MEC Mbombo urges: “For now, it is important that people take up their vaccinations and boosters, when eligible. We still have weekly sites in the province and people can find the details at https://coronavirus.westerncape.gov.za/vaccine/latest-vaccination-sites. Vaccination still is the best defence against the Covid-19 virus. It is also crucial to take it up to ensure we can carry on with our lives safely.”
As part of the provincial vaccination drive, the Department is hosting a provincial campaign called “Vaxxed and Relaxed” to encourage the public to be Covid-safe by getting their vaccines. To enhance this, we are hosting two weekend drives at beaches during weekends in January. The first two activations are
- Saturday 14 January at Blue Waters Beach Resort in Strandfontein (between 12:00 and 17:00)
- Sunday 15 January at Kogel Bay camping site in Kogel Bay (between 12:00 and 17:00).
Let’s all get vaxxed and relax during the rest of the year.