WC Health Dept officials seeing early signs of COVID fourth wave

The province's head of Health, Dr Keith Cloete, said that over the past few days there'd been an increase in cases.

FILE: A hospital worker walks amongst patients in the COVID-19 ward at Khayelitsha Hospital, about 35km from the centre of Cape Town, on 29 December 2020. The patents in this ward are not critically serious, but do require oxygen and to lie down. Picture: Rodger Bosch/AFP.

CAPE TOWN - Western Cape health officials have warned they are seeing the early signs of a COVID19 fourth wave.

The province's head of Health, Dr Keith Cloete, said that over the past few days there'd been an increase in cases.

He said that while infections were still low, they were seeing around 44 positive tests per day.

"The numbers are low, so if you are very low between waves, there's be a big increase, any increase will be a big percentage increase but a small numerical increase. The proportion positive has increased to 3.4. Most of our districts are starting to see these increases and there's a noticeable increase in the northern and western sub-district."

The provincial Health Department's Professor Mary-Ann Davies said that they had noticed a clear change in the pattern of cases.

"Over the past several weeks we've had decreases in cases and in the last week, almost every day we've seen a percentage increase and in the last three days it has been a 20% increase in cases compared to cases in the previous week."