Gauteng Health MEC Bandile Masuku said that while the department was feeling the pressure of new COVID-19 infections, it was not true that hospitals in the province were full.
A WhatsApp message has been making the rounds that Gauteng hospitals have started turning COVID-19 patients away.
Gauteng has started seeing a surge in infections as the rate of recoveries slows down.
The country’s economic hub has, on average, recorded 3,000 new cases daily over the past week.
Masuku said that the province had started equipping public hospitals like the Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital with more beds using alternative building technology.
He said that to deal with the shortfall, the province had activated field hospitals such as the one at Nasrec where more beds would be stationed.
“So we have not yet got to the point where we are turning patients away, we’re trying by all means to accommodate them.”
But Gauteng Premier David Makhura said that the COVID-19 storm was here and something needed to be done.
“Given where we are now that essentially extraordinary and some of them may mean asking the national command council to introduce some of the restrictions we have had in the earlier phases.”
Masuku said that each corner of the province, mainly Johannesburg, Tshwane, Ekurhuleni and the Vaal, would have field hospitals to increase the capacity of the health system in the province.