Cape Town’s Covid-19-free care houses: an uplifting story of hope in the Western Cape

Cape Town’s Covid-19-free care houses: an uplifting story of hope in the Western Cape

Covid-19 statistics reveal that the coronavirus is most lethal among older people, with people in care houses dying in great deals in the UK. In South Africa, a quarter of all Covid-19 deaths have been among people in the 50-60 age group and not far off the remainder of the 2,500 individuals have been aged 60 and over. In Cape Town, 2 care homes have shown how to lower and even get rid of the presence of Covid-19 Dr Duncan Carmichael shares how Nazareth House and Highland Home have actually become shining examples of safeguarding susceptible individuals in the battle against the pandemic.– Editor

A tale of two care homes

By Dr Duncan Carmichael *

” It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of knowledge, it was the age of absurdity …” Charles Dickens was writing about the Reign of terror, however his lines could simply as easily reflect the ongoing coronavirus crisis.

In this pandemic without a cure– yet– many readers will definitely have wondered what may occur ought to they contract the infection. Businesses that need to be open have actually closed, and lots of frantically starving people stand in queues for food handouts.

care homes
Dr Duncan Carmichael

If one were to take a positive from all of these challenges, it would be that nature has actually been offered a breather. The skies over China have not been this clear in decades; dolphins have returned to the waterways of Venice; and leopards have actually been spotted wandering the towns of the Western Cape.

But as economies reboot, even those silver linings will vanish. What will stay is the feeling that has actually been consistent throughout– worry. The media is filled with news of the senior and the vulnerable dying, leaving people terrified. Older patients of mine who began 2020 active and happy are shadows of their former selves after months of gloomy news and indoor isolation.

Federal governments in lots of countries stand accused of failing to take care of their elderly. In the UK, for instance, one-third of coronavirus deaths have happened in care houses There are 3 factors offered for this. Initially, the senior are more vulnerable to infection. Second, they are in close contact in care houses, that makes social distancing hard. And third, care workers who leave after their shift can introduce infections from the Neighborhood.

The question that pertains to my mind is how South Africa is doing when it pertains to taking care of our most vulnerable. I ‘d like to share the tale of two care houses, both in Vredehoek in Cape Town, and both of which have remained in the news recently.

The first is Nazareth House, which taped its first coronavirus case in May. According to its press release, staff then checked all 24 homeowners in its dementia wing, of whom another three evaluated positive. Two of the four cases were terminally ill and died quickly afterwards, while a 3rd succumbed to Covid-19 Nazareth Home has actually intensified its efforts to secure its residents– besides isolating residents in their rooms and sanitising thoroughly, personnel are being accommodated on the facilities to prevent them generating the virus. As a result, Nazareth Home has not taped another break out and the remaining locals remain devoid of Coronavirus.

The 2nd care house is Highlands Home, which has nearly 190 locals with an average age of83 When one senior resident tested favorable, the care house’s medical professional swabbed every resident, with 14 more testing favorable. Highlands Home does not have the space to accommodate its personnel, however it did put in location rigorous seclusion and cleansing policies The result? It taped just one death and 14 recoveries (a number of whom were asymptomatic). Previously, it has tape-recorded no new cases.

Nazareth House’s isolation policy protected four-fifths of its locals from contracting the infection. Highlands Home not only avoided more than 170 residents from getting the virus; it recorded an outstanding 93 percent recovery rate amongst those who did.

These are boosting stories, not least because almost 80 percent of South Africa’s coronavirus deaths remained in individuals over 50. I am often asked why older individuals are more susceptible. These are still early days in the look for responses about Covid-19, however the following two factors seem highly pertinent:

  1. Our immune system becomes compromised with age, which results in swelling and a reduced ability to combat infections. What can we do about this? For most people, it refers following the fundamentals: a great night’s sleep (eight hours, uninterrupted) together with vitamin D and zinc supplements. The most vulnerable might benefit from immune-booster injections from their doctor.
  2. Over 65 percent of people who died from coronavirus in South Africa had diabetes and almost 60 percent had high blood pressure. The message is simple: cut out sugar and white carbs as much as possible. It’s never ever far too late to do this, and it’s a good idea to do so, due to the fact that sugar drives the typical kind of diabetes and can get worse high blood pressure.

My want the senior and the susceptible throughout these tough times is that they are freed from worry. The 2 care homes in Cape Town have actually revealed that remaining healthy and taking the necessary precautions are essential, and suggest that even those aged 80- plus can survive this crisis. To close with Dickens’s words, let this be “the spring of hope” and not “the winter season of despair”.

  • Duncan Carmichael is a medical physician with 25 years of experience in the profession, and the author of ‘Younger for Longer: How You Can Slow the Ageing Process and Stay Healthy for Life’. He is a regular speaker at conferences on healthy ageing, and has composed many articles on the topic. He founded and runs the Institute of Healthy Aging in Cape Town.

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