Expert warns against complacency as Covid numbers spike

With winter knocking on the door and the fifth wave of Covid infections looming, some maskless citizens blamed the seasonal flu for the infection rate spike and remained sceptical of wearing masks.

There was a drop of new cases from 4 146 people testing positive for the virus last week, to only 2 650 new cases this week, representing a 21% infectious diseases at Wits University, said with the escalation of Covid cases, the average person needs to consider their risk when going out into the public or to work.

“I recommend to everyone that you vaccinate, boost your vaccination and take your own precautions to wear a mask when leaving your home,” he said.

Pauline Kempster-Britz from Randburg said she still wore her mask religiously, despite the relaxation around the regulations of wearing a mask.

“I also still sanitise everywhere I enter, as nothing has changed. I am not willing to take any risks,” Kempster-Britz said.

She said she’d been watching the number of infections climbing over the past few weeks.

“I think there is a spike in infections because fewer people are wearing masks and becoming complacent,” she said.

Kempster-Britz said people quickly forgot the bad times of total isolation and the full impact of regulations and restrictions.

Buitumelo Mokabane from Capital Park said she didn’t wear a mask outdoors anymore. Mokabane said she heard you could get throat infections from wearing a mask.

“It’s okay not to, but I still wear one indoors. It’s a must, I cannot risk it,” she said.

Mokabane said because it took us time to adjust to wearing masks she would feel uncomfortable not wearing a mask indoors. Zandrie Burger said her whole household was currently sick.

“It’s just seasonal flu because we hardly go to town once a week,” Burger said.

Nico Vermaak said he was waiting for the smart people to announce a new variant.

“Even if the virus was getting weaker I was still careful,” he said.

Erica Eybers said we ought to throw the masks away.

“Covid is Covid, whether you wear a mask or not, because I know many vaccinated people who were diagnosed with Covid,” Eybers said.

Jaco Pretorius agreed and said he didn’t believe the masks helped.