South African Corona Virus alert
The town of Plettenberg Bay is aware of the possibility of COVID-19 (coronavirus) and is taking precautions to help prevent the spread in our community. Our protocols are under the guidance of the African Field Epidemiology Network (AFENET), the Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (AFRICA CDC) and World Health Organisation (WHO-AFRO). To report an issue and/or to enquire about the virus please phone the emergency hotline on +27 (0)80 002 9999.
It is important to outline some facts and information about the virus. Please note the AFENET and AFRICA CDC are the lead agencies locally providing protocols for addressing any potential cases of COVID-19 in the area. Together, the region, local cities and towns, and hospitals are coordinating efforts to contain any potential spread of the virus and to get accurate information to the community.
The latest NICD update states that 87 people have been tested in South Africa but all of them show no signs of the virus. The NICD says it remains on high alert and assures that its testing processes, are in line with international standards.
PROTECT YOURSELF FROM ILLNESS: Follow these simple suggestions to decrease your risk of flu, Corona Disease or other respiratory threats:
- Wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
- Cover cough with a tissue, throw tissue in trash, and wash hands.
- Avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth.
- Clean and disinfect objects and surfaces touched frequently.
- Avoid close contact with those who are sick.
- If you get it, stay home, so you can limit your exposure to others.
WHAT THE TOWN OF PLETTENBERG BAY IS DOING
Plettenberg Bay continues to be in close contact with all local and government agencies involved to get the latest information, requirements, and recommendations to prepare for and reduce the severity of the virus spreading.
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT COIVID-19
Get your facts about the virus and infection it can cause. There is an immediate health risk, however South Africa is not yet at a high-risk stage. As the coronavirus spreads, so too has misinformation. Here is a quick review of what scientists have identified to date:
- SARS-CoV-2 is the name of the virus that is spreading.
- COVID-19 is the disease it causes.
- The term ‘Coronavirus’ includes several virus’ that include other types of flu – SARS, MERS and even the common cold.
- It is a new strain of a virus, however most humans have encountered plenty of these disease causing pathogens before.
- The coronavirus tends to target the respiratory systems of bats and other mammals, as well as birds.
- The virus usually is restricted to their wild hosts, not humans.
- Occasionally they make the ‘hop’ into humans, similar to what we saw with the SARS outbreak that originated from bats.
- The animal source has not yet been proved, however bats still remain a probable culprit.
- The coronavirus enters through the airways of its hosts. In the worst cases, this causes severe forms of pneumonia.
- The majority of COVID-19 reported cases (80%) are considered mild, causing cold like symptoms. Most people are carriers of the virus without presenting major symptoms.
- Individuals with underlying medical issues including respiratory and heart conditions, as well as smokers, are among those at highest risk.
- The virus can move from person to person through droplets produced by coughs or sneezes that travel through the air to settle directly on skin or frequently touched surfaces, like doorknobs or cell phones.
- After a person is exposed, symptoms can take weeks to appear, if they do at all.
- Those who carry the virus without showing signs of illness can still spread the disease.