Head of health, Dr Keith Cloete says they noticed in the 4th wave, a so-called decoupling between cases, hospitalisations and deaths. This means while cases rose sharply – there were fewer hospitalizations and deaths – compared to previous waves. Cloete says with a 5th wave predicted over the winter, the decoupling is likely to continue, especially if vaccination rates increase.
The Western Cape Health Department says any future Covid-19 waves are not anticipated to have a massive impact on the health system.
Meanwhile, national health authorities say they’ve seen a marked decrease in the number of excess deaths reported during the fourth wave of the Covid-19 pandemic. Public Health Specialist at the NICD, Dr Waasila Jassat, says the decrease in excess mortalities has become more apparent, over the past 2 to 3 weeks. Jassat says all other indicators, such as hospitalizations, severe disease and ICU treatment, have also, in the current wave, seen a drastic decline.