No Need to Panic About Coronavirus

While we are aware that there is a sense of worry and panic throughout the country following the confirmed case of COVID 19 in KwaZulu-Natal, the City appeals for calmness as there is no need for panic at this stage.

In our efforts to deal with any cases of Corona Virus in our space, the City has established and activated the Outbreak Team, which mainly consists of healthcare workers. The City is also part of the Joint Operation Centre dealing with the outbreak consisting of officials from all spheres of government.

There are no specific measures currently recommended to prevent COVID-2019. However, the following can provide protection against infection with coronaviruses and many other viruses that are more common in South Africa:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.  If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer;
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands;
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick;
  • Stay home when you are sick and try and keep distance from others at home;
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with flexed elbow or a tissue, then throw the tissue in the bin;
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces;
  • Avoid contact with farm or wild animals (alive or dead), animal markets, and products that come from animals (such as uncooked meat).

While the first cases may have involved exposure to an animal source, the virus now seems to be spreading from person-to-person.  Thus far the majority of cases have occurred in people with close physical contact to infected persons and healthcare workers caring for patients with COVID-2019.

Current symptoms reported for patients with COVID-2019 include mild to severe respiratory illness with fever, cough, and difficulty in breathing.  Reported illnesses have ranged from infected people with little to no symptoms to people being severely ill. Anyone with any of the symptoms is advised visit their nearest health care facility.

It is a fact that currently there is no vaccine for COVID-2019.  Officials in China have intensified efforts to contain the spread of the virus.

Leading the City of Ekurhuleni Outbreak Team is Dr Joseph Sepuya and Dr Ronnel Kellerman who can be reached at 082 826 1987 and 084 974 6051, respectively.