Experts predict Gauteng will hit 3rd wave peak in next two weeks

Senior Researcher at the CSIR, Dr Ridhwaan Suliman said the number of COVID-19 related deaths in Gauteng had increased by 80% week-on-week.

FILE: Healthcare workers at the bedside of a patient admitted to the Nasrec field hospital in Gauteng during the coronavirus pandemic. Picture: @BandileMasuku/Twitter

CAPE TOWN - The Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) believes that depending on the public's behaviour, Gauteng could experience its peak of infections in the next two weeks.

With the third wave of COVID-19 in the country showing no immediate signs of slowing down, the province continued to record an uptick in new infections, registering a record high of new cases at the weekend.

Senior Researcher at the CSIR Dr Ridhwaan Suliman on Monday said the number of COVID-19 related deaths in Gauteng had increased by 80% week-on-week.

Gauteng is currently the epicentre of the third wave, accounting for more than 60% of the nation's caseload.

Suliman said while it was difficult to predict when Gauteng's third peak might hit, or how long it would last, trends showed this could happen within the next fortnight.

“Based on the trajectory of previous waves, we may enter a peak in the next two weeks, but it is very much dependent on our individual and collective behaviour."

With thousands of new cases being recorded daily, hospitalisation admissions continue to climb.

There are currently over 5,000 COVID patients hospitalised, more than a fifth of them are in ICU.

"An extra burden is placed on hospitals in Gauteng with one of the biggest hospitals, Charlotte Maxeke, being closed at the moment. That had a number of beds that were previously used for COVID-19 patients, so I think that places an extra strain."

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