Stringent measures must be enforced at old age homes, says Minister Zulu

It was proven by scientists that the elderly and those with underlying health conditions were the most vulnerable when treating COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus.

Minister of Social Development Lindiwe Zulu at a media briefing on 16 March 2020 on plans by government to curb the spread of the coronavirus in South Africa. Picture: Sethembiso Zulu/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - Social Development Minister Lindiwe Zulu on Wednesday said she wanted access to old age homes restricted while health authorities tried to manage cases of coronavirus (COVID-19) in South Africa.

There were now 116 coronavirus cases in South Africa, with Gauteng the epicentre in the country with 61 infections followed by the Western Cape with 31.

It was proven by scientists that the elderly and those with underlying health conditions were the most vulnerable when treating COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus.

According to the Department of Health’s latest statement on those infected with the virus, at least eight of them were over the age of 65.

If Zulu had her way, there would be more stringent measures at old age homes.

“We must increase in terms of our support systems in making sure that the elderly in old age homes and centres that they do not get into serious stress,” Zulu said.

The minister implored those in charge of old age homes to take precautionary measures and save lives.

“I’m confident that South Africans in general are also concerned and they will take the necessary precautions,” she said.

WATCH: Coronavirus in South Africa explained

To track the latest developments around the coronavirus both in South Africa and abroad, click on this live status report from Strategix.