Only high-risk patients to be tested for virus

The new testing centre in Groote Schuur.

The Western Cape government will now only do Covid-19 testing, in the Cape Town metro, on high-risk patients and those most vulnerable to the virus .

Provincial Department of Health spokeswoman, Natalie Watlington, outlined the criteria for testing.

* You are admitted to hospital with Covid-19 symptoms.

* You are over 55 and have Covid-19 symptoms.

* You are of any age, have Covid-19 symptoms, and have one or more comorbidities for which you are on treatment.

* You are a health-care worker and you have Covid-19 symptoms

* You live in a care or old age home and have Covid-19 symptoms.

Those not in one of these high-risk categories will no longer be tested by their local clinic. Instead, Ms Watlington said, they should assume they have Covid-19 and isolate for 14 days from the onset of symptoms to prevent the virus spreading.

Self-isolating means not leaving home and limiting contact with others.

Ms Watlington said the provincial government could help anyone needing to isolate or quarantine with free, comfortable and safe alternative accommodation. Transport, meals, and a laundry service will be provided.

If you cannot safely isolate at home, call 021 202 090 or 021 202 0938 or email DOH-WSSS.COVID19@westerncape.gov.za for assistance.