Provincial leaders discuss possibility of exempting Western Cape from booze ban
Dr Saadiq Kariem, chief of operations for the Western Cape Health Department, says the provincial executive is evaluating the possibility of lifting the alcohol ban in the province.
With Covid-19 cases on a downward trend in the Western Cape, some have argued that it is time for a differentiated approach to the lockdown regulations.
On Friday afternoon, Dr Kariem told CapeTalk that provincial leaders were currently considering their options in a Cabinet meeting.
As we speak, I know there is a Cabinet conversation around exactly that... from a policy perspective, the Premier is having that conversation with his Cabinet because we are on a downward trend in the Western Cape.Dr. Saadiq Kariem, Chief of Operations - Western Cape Department Of Health
Hospital occupancy has come down to 68% of the total beds as opposed to 70% and even higher at the peak of the pandemic.Dr. Saadiq Kariem, Chief of Operations - Western Cape Department Of Health
We are confident that, from a hospital perspective, we can manage both the trauma load that's coming in and the Covid-19 patients that require care.Dr. Saadiq Kariem, Chief of Operations - Western Cape Department Of Health
At the same time, Dr. Kariem the Western Cape's public hospitals will gradually start to reintroduce other services such as elective surgeries.
He says the alcohol ban has had a significant impact on reducing the number of trauma-related hospital admissions.
As a health department, we are already considering reintroducing all our services that we've had to put on hold because of Covid-19, that includes elective surgery.Dr. Saadiq Kariem, Chief of Operations - Western Cape Department Of Health
During the months of lockdown, we had dropped our surgical operations by something like 52% in the metropole area. PopDr. Saadiq Kariem, Chief of Operations - Western Cape Department Of Health
A significant number of people had to have their procedures delayed and we've not begun reintroducing our services across the board.Dr. Saadiq Kariem, Chief of Operations - Western Cape Department Of Health
Listen to the discussion on Lunch with Pippa Hudson: (from 05:48)
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