Cape Town – The Virtual Emergency Care Tactical Operation telemedicine project (Vector) has achieved a success rate of 79.5%.
This was revealed in a statement released on Wednesday by the Democratic Alliance’s (DA) spokesperson for health, Wendy Philander.
She said the Vector project was initiated after evidence showed an increase in deaths among elderly and diabetic persons due to Covid-19.
However, since Vector’s introduction they have witnessed a dramatically improved response from those categorised as high-risk patients.
She said the telemedicine project involved a series of engagements by physicians, endocrinologists and virologists to intervene on behalf of those at greater risk of death.
Philander said the project used data to target patients at risk before they faced severe complications due to Covid-19 in order to escalate the level of care.
“ It found that an earlier admission of diabetic patients along with acute glycaemic control reduces Covid-19 diabetic mortality,” she said.
The project reached 356 patients during its first phase, of whom only 122 were referred to hospital, while 87 were discharged and 14 were recovering.
The project has since been extended to rural areas across the Western Cape.
“This groundbreaking provincial initiative helped reduce the mortality rate of these patients and indicates the data-led approach of the province to defeating the virus,” Philander said.
She said she will be inviting the provincial Health Department to discuss how Vector could be used to combat other illnesses.
Philander said as South Africa enters alert level 1 of the national lockdown, it was imperative to continue supporting those at risk and make the necessary behavioural changes to remain safe and mitigate the chances of contracting the deadly coronavirus.
African News Agency/ANA