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CAPE TOWN - The Western Cape's COVID-19 peak is now expected during the first week of August.

Premier Alan Winde, joined by health experts, has revealed that the pandemic's peak is now likely to be flatter, longer and later.

Based on the National COVID-19 Epi Model, the province would have hit its infection peak by the end of the month.

On a week-to-week basis, public health experts monitor the realtime pattern of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The graph is influenced by COVID-19 deaths and hospitalisations.

Currently, there are fewer deaths and hospitalisations than what was forecast.

Western Cape public health medicine specialist Professor Andrew Boulle said that the province was only halfway to its maximum burden.

"The previous calibration and the current calibration peak is through herd immunity, so it's on the assumption that a large enough proportion of the population are infected at a point in time and at that point each person who is infected infects less than one person and infections start declining."

Boulle said that the scenario was based on certain assumptions about the continued growth of the pandemic.

"We are currently at, our estimate, about 70 deaths a day. The appropriate number of hospitalisations that go with that level of burden and that could double and that would double kind of early August. If this pattern were to play out, that would be the timing and extent of it."

Professor Boulle added: "If the Western Cape were a country and we were compared to other countries, at this point in time globally, we might be one of the countries with the highest current daily mortality rate per million population in the world."

Of the 63,800 people infected in the province, more than 1,800 have died.

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This article first appeared on EWN : WC's COVID-19 infection peak now expected in August

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