KZN increases tracer teams, puts in plans to ensure schoolchildren are fed

KZN premier Sihle Zikalala and health MEC Nomagugu Simelane-Zulu address the media on steps taken by the province to combat the spread of the coronavirus.
KZN premier Sihle Zikalala and health MEC Nomagugu Simelane-Zulu address the media on steps taken by the province to combat the spread of the coronavirus.
Image: Sandile Ndlovu

The KwaZulu-Natal health department has increased tracer teams to about 2,000 people as Covid-19 positive numbers in the province rise to 80.

The eThekwini district had 45 confirmed cases by Monday, compared to Amajuba with three, Ugu with four, Umgungundlovu with five and Umkhanyakude with one. Only 58 of the 80 cases had been broken down by district at that time.

“To reduce the burden on hospitals, the department has activated trained ward-based health teams,” said health MEC Nomagugu Simelane-Zulu.

“The beds available have been increased with the support of the private sector and in every town quarantine sites have been identified.”

Through its Operation Sukuma Sakhe programme, provincial government war rooms will identify vulnerable communities and food-insecure families to provide help during the lockdown.

For children who get their only meal from school — and therefore miss out when schools are closed — the programme is trying to ensure, through its war rooms, that those families get food.

Premier Sihle Zikalala said people lining up to receive their grants were being encouraged to maintain social distance and preventive measures.

Zikalala added that there was no reason to worry about the provision of food and that informal settlements would be provided with water.

“In informal settlements, each municipality has been given equipment for the provision of water, including trucks and water tankers.

“We have enough food for the people of the province and all outlets that supply food will provide food. We can confirm availability of sufficient goods when it comes to food production.”

The premier called on citizens to observe the national lockdown. He added that in addition to law-enforcement personnel dispatched to preserve law and order, structures comprising of MECs, mayors, traditional leaders, councillors and other social partners had been directed to establish district command centres.

“These structures will ensure effective implementation of all the rules and regulations that relate to the lockdown,” he said.


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