STATEMENT BY CHIEF MEDICAL OFFICER
DR. RONALD GEORGES
UPDATE ON THE COVID-19 OUTBREAK IN THE VIRGIN ISLANDS
July 4th, 2021
On 3rd July, I gave a report on the place we had been because it pertains to the present COVID-19 outbreak within the Virgin Islands as of twond July, 2021.
Right now, I want to offer you an extra replace now that the BVI Well being Providers Authority has returned the COVID-19 testing figures as of threerd July.
A complete of 752 checks had been run on the twond of July 2021 with an extra 118 samples testing constructive for COVID-19.
This brings our whole energetic COVID-19 case depend to 273.
Of those 273 circumstances, 12 are quarantined on vessels and associated to entry screening, 256 are on Tortola, 4 (4) on Virgin Gorda and one (1) on Jost Van Dyke.
Journey screening accounts for 45 circumstances, whereas 206 circumstances are from contact tracing, with some individuals presenting themselves or being screened because of attending the emergency room.
With respect to the vaccination standing of the 273 energetic circumstances, 55 % are unvaccinated, 13 % partially vaccinated, 17 % vaccinated, and 15 % not recorded or to be decided.
Of word, extra clusters of circumstances have been recognized in a number of areas.
A cluster of 14 circumstances recognized to this point on the Adina Donovan Dwelling for the Aged and 18 members of workers on the BVI Well being Providers Authority had been recognized by mass screening at each of those establishments.
Measures have been instantly taken to safeguard the general public by way of isolation of affected individuals and additional strengthening of an infection management measures and curtailment of non-essential providers.
Non-public well being care establishments and different important providers have been suggested to start preparation for mass screening of their workers to find out the extent to which they’ve been affected.
The present state of affairs with respect to the COVID-19 outbreak within the Virgin Islands is quickly evolving and given the fast development of the outbreak, identification of any variants is essential.
Extra samples will subsequently be packaged for transport to CARPHA for genetic sequencing.
It’s anticipated that case counts will proceed to rise, and it’s important for all of us to behave responsibly and comply with directives to arrest the present fee of transmission.
The Well being Emergency Operations Centre will subsequently instantly advise Cupboard on any public well being measures which can be required to arrest the present outbreak.
The earlier recommendation given to the general public is right now reiterated:
- Individuals ought to voluntarily restrict pointless motion and so far as potential keep at dwelling.
- Should you should exit please strictly adhere to all public well being measures in drive no matter your vaccination standing. This contains:
- Common masks carrying;
- Common hand hygiene;
- Social distancing of no less than six toes from individuals not out of your family.
- Keep away from all mass gathering occasions, particularly, indoor occasions.
- The place gatherings are occurring there have to be strict adherence to all public well being measures. If you’re not comfy with what you see please do go away and report any breaches to the organisers and authorities.
- All places of work and companies ought to guarantee very strict adherence to measures already in place and may start consideration for additional limiting the variety of patrons/or shoppers coming into premises to additional restrict alternatives for transmission.
- All enterprise and places of work ought to contemplate implementing their enterprise continuity plans and distant working the place potential.
- Should you do suppose you’ve got been uncovered or have signs of COVID-19 do name the medical hotline at 852 7650 to schedule a take a look at or for additional recommendation.
- If in case you have signs of COVID-19 instantly self-isolate and search to be examined as quickly as potential.
At present there are over 250 individuals in necessary quarantine with a number of hundred extra in voluntary self-isolation.
Individuals are reminded to train endurance with the Public Well being and Well being Providers groups and comply with directions given for their very own security and that of the general public.
Because of the rise in COVID-19 exercise, reporting of laboratory outcomes and processing of quarantine releases can be delayed as extra workers is introduced on board to alleviate the workload.
Specifically, consideration needs to be paid to the timing of testing after publicity. It’s crucial to attend till one of the best testing interval as suggested by Public Well being.
Individuals testing too early may be lulled right into a false sense of safety as they could be inside the incubation interval for COVID-19.
The Public Well being Unit will publish a bulletin with identified publicity occasions and prompt testing instances for the steering of individuals.
It is very important perceive that now we have many layers of safety in opposition to COVID-19. These layers embrace our entry protocols and quarantine, public well being measures and protocols as exterior obstacles to assist forestall us from changing into contaminated with COVID-19.
To assist strengthen our our bodies and immune programs, dwelling a wholesome life-style with a balanced food regimen, train, and stress discount are key.
Nevertheless, regardless of the numerous conspiracies and misconceptions surrounding vaccination it stays a protected and efficient layer of inside safety so as to add to the entire different layers of safety that now we have in opposition to COVID-19.
Worldwide knowledge has proven vaccination to be protected with few unwanted side effects and this has been borne out within the native proof as nicely the place most individuals with unwanted side effects have discovered them to be gentle.
Vaccination considerably reduces the chance of uncovered and vaccinated individuals changing into constructive by 60 % to 90 % and in the event that they do grow to be constructive their threat of transmission is additional decreased by up 67percent.
Due to this fact, the danger of an uncovered vaccinated individual transmitting COVID-19 is vastly diminished. Consequently, vaccinated individuals who’re potential or informal contacts of circumstances and never experiencing signs don’t have to isolate at this cut-off date. In the event that they do develop signs, they need to isolate and be examined instantly. Individuals who’re shut contacts ought to search recommendation from the Public Well being Unit.
Vaccination considerably reduces the chance of a vaccinated individual changing into constructive if uncovered by 60-90 % relying on dose interval and additional reduces the severity of illness if they’re contaminated. Extreme illness, hospitalisation and loss of life are largely eradicated making COVID-19 a a lot much less probably severe or life-threatening illness for vaccinated individuals.
Widespread vaccination may induce herd immunity and shield individuals who’re unable or unwilling to be vaccinated and subsequently render COVID-19 considerably much less of a public well being menace to the Territory.
The edge for this impact varies based mostly on the variants and their transmissibility, the efficacy of the vaccine in use, and varied different elements associated to inhabitants dynamics. Nevertheless, extra is healthier than much less on this occasion.
Vaccination stays voluntary and a private and particular person selection within the Virgin Islands. As we’re all conscious the present vaccination inventory expires on 31st July.
Individuals who haven’t obtained their first dose ought to nonetheless search to be vaccinated as even a single dose affords extra safety over not being vaccinated.
The Authorities of the Virgin Islands, the Ministry of Well being and Social Growth, and the Governor’s Workplace will proceed to make finest efforts to make sure that extra doses grow to be out there after the 31st July and particularly for any one that has obtained a primary dose after the threerd July deadline.
I subsequently wish to once more encourage individuals to hunt to be reliably knowledgeable and avail themselves of the entire present alternatives to be vaccinated and be vigilant for indicators of COVID-19 which embrace headache, runny nostril, nasal congestion, fever, dry cough, muscle aches, vomiting, and lack of style, scent or urge for food.
Should you or your family members are experiencing any indicators or signs contact the Public Well being Unit at 468-4936, 468-2274, or 468-2285 or the Medical Hotline at 852-7650 instantly.
If you’re having a medical emergency, then you need to name 911.
Allow us to proceed to do our particular person and collective half to maintain one another and ourselves wholesome and protected.