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Increasing Covid19 Infections in the Greater Oudtshoorn a Huge Concern

Oudtshoorn, 17 November 2020The Executive Mayor, Councillor Chris Macpherson is pleading with the residents of the Greater Oudtshoorn to adhere to the COVID19 regulations as the Garden Route District Municipality (GRDM) has experienced a rapid increase on COVID19 infections in the last seven days.

In a media statement issued by the Western Cape Department of Health in the Garden Route this week, Oudtshoorn experienced an increase of 161% COVID19 infections in seven days.

“Even though the Greater Oudtshoorn had the second lowest increase in the Garden Route Municipality District, following Kannaland with no new cases, we remain concern as we experience many COVID19 related deaths,” said Mayor Macpherson.

The Greater Oudtshoorn has to date had 112 COVID19 related deaths since the beginning of the arrival of the Corona Virus in South Africa. This puts the town in the second position after George.

“We urge the people of the Greater Oudtshoorn to adhere to COVID19 regulations that include wearing of masks, keeping of safe social distancing and constantly washing of hands. We can only win over COVID19 and go back to normal if we work together. All of us want to avoid the second wave of the virus; however, the manner in which people behave is certainly taking us to the second wave of the virus,” Macpherson added.

“When one walks around in communities, it is evident that people are walking without masks. Businesses have beautiful sign boards and notices “no masks no entry”.  However, they do not enforce it do allow people within their shops. I would like to urge  all within the Greater Oudtshoorn municipal area to comply with basic Covid-19 requirements of wearing masks, sanitize and social distancing to try bring down the numbers of Covid-19  infections.”

The media statement released by the Western Cape Department of Health in the Garden Route on 16 November 2020, reads as follows:

16 November 2020

Garden Route COVID cases on the rise

Western Cape Government Health in the Garden Route is experiencing an increase in COVID-19 numbers across the district.

“The total number of positive patients for the district is 12 289 in comparison with a week earlier of 11 466.  This is an increase of 823 positive patients, which is most disconcerting. The increase for the previous week was 410 cases. There has been a 237 % district increase in cases over the last 7 days, compared to the 7 days prior”, said Dr Terence Marshall, health cluster lead for Department of Health.

Case comparisons over 14 days

Subdistrict Recent cases 7-14 days ago Recent cases past 7 days Increase %
Bitou 61 115 189%
George 207 464 224%
Hessequa 13 29 223%
Kannaland 2 0 0%
Knysna 60 172 287%
Mossel Bay 38 145 382%
Oudtshoorn 28 45 161%
Sub-total 409 970 237%


“Despite our wanting to return to normal, and despite the relative success of our COVID-19 response, it is important to keep up our prevention behaviour. COVID-19 is not gone; we need to work together to avoid a second wave. As more people are moving around and economic activity is allowed under level 1 restrictions, we are seeing smaller clusters of infections flare up. Many of these flare-ups originate at social gatherings, which can be anything from a party, religious gathering or even in a workplace – any place where large numbers of people congregate that is crowded has poor ventilation and social distancing cannot be maintained. When going out, always wear your mask and avoid crowded places, close-contact settings, and confined enclosed spaces with poor ventilation. Do not become complacent. Even when you feel safe between friends and family, you should continue to wear your mask and maintain a distance of at least 1,5 m from other people”, said District Health Director, Mr Zee Brickles.

Daily stats update as of 16 November 2020:

Sub-district Total Active Recovered Died
Hessequa 406 35 352 19
Mossel Bay 2 672 105 2 492 75
George 4 620 663 3 833 125
Knysna 1 888 231 1 604 53
Bitou 884 168 689 27
Kannaland 148 1 145 2
Oudtshoorn 1 671 61 1 500 110
TOTAL 12 289 1 264 10 615 411


Hospitalisations: According to the latest information available, for both private and public there are 136 patients in hospital of which 24 are in ICU/high care.


  • Re-allocating staff back to support of COVID-positive tracking and contact tracing
  • Reviewing non-essential hospital services such as elective surgery, which has just been started again.
  • Interrogating hot spots for selected Community Screening and Testing.
  • Communications activities which feed into larger Provincial COVID-19 campaign
  • Sending in motivations to extend temporary additional contract posts to ensure sufficient staff available. 


  • Use outside space because fresher is better – dine outside, do outdoor activities 
  • Make smart choices in every setting. For example, take the stairs if you cannot distance in the elevator. 
  • Review the capacity of a venue – if you cannot maintain 1.5m then consider an alternative venue. Reward those businesses that think of your safety. 
  • Avoid queues and close contact where possible when going out – order drinks and food from your table instead of standing in queues. If someone stands too close, kindly and politely ask them to step back. 
  • Ensure the venue you are at has its windows open to ensure fresh air circulates. If they don’t do so, find a venue that will. 
  • If inside, keep masks whenever possible (when finished eating) and try and sit close to a window that is open. 
  • Complete the attendance register honestly and accurately so we can notify you in case of possible infection. We need this data for contact tracing, and it can help us prevent a bushfire. 
  • Always wear your mask when outside and continue applying the 5 golden rules of hygiene in your everyday activities. 
  • Do not share drinks or cigarettes, and make sure your cutlery has been properly cleaned before use.
  • If you are sick, STAY at home. It is not worth the risk of infecting your friends.