Fourways based Witkoppen Clinic, in collaboration with the National Department of Health (DoH) and the National Institute of Communicable Diseases (NICD), is geared up to handle the impact of Covid-19. The non-profit organisation services almost 10 000 patients every month, with mobile clinics providing primary healthcare to many communities, including Diepsloot, Msawawa and surrounding areas.
“Following guidelines set out by the DoH and NICD, everyone who comes into the clinic is screened for the Covid-19, including patients and staff. If the screening is positive, the patient will remain in a designated separate area of the clinic to prevent spreading of the virus. We have systems in place to contact the NCID, who will take it from there,” says Emma Sim, Covid Unit Lead at Witkoppen Clinic.
The DoH and NICD have prepared a case definition to guide the screening process and help clinics identify potential infections. “Covid-19 testing will only be performed on patients who meet certain criteria, or exhibit specific symptoms,” says Sim. “Community clinics, including Witkoppen Clinic, are strictly adhering to these guidelines.”
Patients will only be tested for Covid-19 if they screen positive for the following criteria:
- The patient shows common signs of infection, including a cough, sore throat, shortness of breath or fever.
- The patient has been in close contact with someone who has been infected or is suspected of having Covid-19.
- The patient has worked in or attended a healthcare facility where patients are being treated for the infection.
- The patient has been admitted with severe pneumonia of an unknown cause.
- The patient has travelled to areas with ongoing Covid-19 infections.
“If you think that you are at risk based on the case definition criteria, please visit our clinic for assistance immediately,” says Sim. “You can also call the Department of Health Coronavirus outbreak hotline number, and they will come out to you to perform necessary screening. This way, you can you avoid going out into public and infecting others.”
According to the World Health Organisation, simple measures can be taken to protect oneself and prevent the spread of the virus. “Wash your hands often, cover your nose and mouth when coughing or sneezing, avoid touching your face, and avoid close contact with those who are sick. As a community, we are all responsible for doing what we can to prevent the spread of the virus,” says Sim.
Based at 105 William Nicol Drive, Fourways, Johannesburg, Witkoppen Clinic is open from 7.30am to 4pm every weekday. The Clinic offers a range of healthcare services, including HIV and TB testing, a mental health clinic, dentist and mobile health clinics. For more information, visit their website at www.witkoppen.org.
Coronavirus outbreak hotline: 0800 029 999
Witkoppen Clinic: 011 705 2438
Lancet Laboratory: 011 680 8237 (private testing only)
Distributed by Be-cause Integrated Communications:
021 447 1082 / 072 693 9401
On behalf of Witkoppen Health and Welfare Centre:
Director: Dr Jean Bassett
t: 021 447 1082
m: 072 693 9401