CAPE TOWN – Ever wondered how South Africa would cope if Covid-19 infections spiralled out of control ?
It is abundantly clear that South Africa’s healthcare system, like most countries around the world would battle to accommodate masses needing hospitalisation should the need arise.
We have seen countries like China build temporary hospitals within days to deal with the pandemic but how would that look in South Africa?
Responding to questions from journalists on Tuesday, KZN Health MEC Nomagugu Simelane-Zulu said that National government together with the provinces where planning for this scenario by identifying spaces that could be used. She outlined non-viable schools as a potential option.
Here’s a list of 6 spaces that could be used if the need arises ;
There is a considerable number of school buildings that have been handed back to the Department of Public Works by the education department – these could be converted into temporary hospitals should the need arise.
2. Community Halls
Community halls across the country with their large open spaces could also be used to accommodate patients – because many of these halls are run by municipalities, access to convert them into temporary healthcare facilities would be viable.
Due to the National lockdown and restrictions on travel, many hotels have little or no occupancy. Owners in the private sector would have to be canvassed or could volunteer these premises for conversion into temporary hospitals.
4. University residence & Boarding Schools
Given the fact that Universities and schools have been shutdown indefinitely, should the need arise to make use of these premises then an arrangement would have to be made with these facilities to temporarily house patients.
5. Government Buildings
Non-essential government buildings such as libraries, offices and other facilities could be used as makeshift hospitals to care for those infected by the virus.
Possibly a last resort, but many of South Africa’s cities have big modern stadiums as a result of the 2010 FIFA World Cup. Parts of these stadiums can be converted into temporary healthcare facilities.