ACTING Gauteng Health MEC Jacob Mamabolo says the correlation between alcohol consumption and the number of emergency cases at public hospitals is ‘undeniable’
He called upon people of Gauteng to act responsibly during Level 2 lockdown that has seen the lifting of the ban on the sale of alcohol.
Mamabolo was commenting on the Gauteng Department of Health’s statistics for admissions of emergency cases during April, May and July 2020, which were compared with the same period last year.
“This puts pressure on the health system,” said Mamabolo in a statement.
He said according to the statistics, admission for emergency cases decreased during April, May and July this year compared to last year.
The number of emergency room admissions increased in June but decreased again in July after the ban.
He said this can be attributed to lockdown and the ban on sale of alcohol.
“The direct effect of trauma cases is that a bed that could have been used for other services including COVID-19 are now taken up by alcohol related cases,” he said.
“It should be noted, however, that not all trauma cases require a bed or overnight admission and the length of stay varies case by case.”
By a way of comparison the Chris Hani Baragwanath Academic Hospital in Soweto had 2797 emergency cases for period covering April and May in 2020, which is less than 5163 cases for the same period in 2019.
The same applies to Tembisa Tertiary Hospital, which had 5 540 cases for April and May this year compared to 8803 for the same period in 2019.
On the other hand, the Dr George Mukhari Academic Hospital in Tshwane had a notable difference of 4 614 emergency cases for period covering April and May in 2020 to compared 7 583 for the same months in the preceding year.
The data for emergency cases since the declaration of level 2 and the unbanning is still being collected.
The crash occurred on the N4 between Trans Orange Road and Rebecca Street in Pretoria west.
Empty and full alcohol bottles were found in the suspect’s vehicle.
(COMPILED BY INSIDE POLITICS STAFF)