BVI News

COVID-19 cases increase in the Caribbean

Confirmed cases of the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) continues to be on the rise in the English-speaking Caribbean islands, with a total of four cases including one death up to press time.

These islands include, Guyana, St Vincent and the Grenadines and Jamaica, which all have nationals who currently reside and frequent the British Virgin Islands.

Guyana

Guyana reported its first confirmed case of the virus on Wednesday March 11, with their President David Granger making the announcement via a statement.

He said, “the patient has been identified as a 52-year-old Guyanese female who had travelled from the United States of America, which has reported cases of COVID-19.”

“She arrived in the country on 5th March, presented to the public health system on 10th March and was found to have uncontrolled Diabetes and Hypertension. She subsequently died at the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation at 08:00 hours on 11th March,” President Granger explained.

St Vincent and the Grenadines

St Vincent and the Grenadines also confirmed its first case of the virus on Wednesday.

Their Minister of Health & Wellness, Luke Browne made the announcement at a press briefing, and said results from testing conducted on a Vincentian woman returned positive.

According to Minister Browne, the Vincentian woman had recently returned from the United Kingdom, and voluntarily reported her symptoms to local health officials on March 10. She is currently in voluntary isolation at her place of residence.

Jamaica

Jamaica, in the meantime, confirmed its second case of the virus also on Wednesday, after their Health Minister Dr Christopher Tufton made the announcement via a social media post.

Dr Turton said the second person infected is a US Embassy employee who had recently returned from the United Kingdom.

Jamaica’s first case of the virus which was reported a day prior, involved a female national who had also recently returned to the Caribbean island after attending a funeral in the United Kingdom.

Other confirmed cases in the Caribbean

Meanwhile, Cuba has confirmed a total three cases of the virus. According to media reports, four tourists who came from Italy were tested after visiting the colonial town of Trinidad, which is located around 185 miles southeast of Havana.

Three of those tourists were confirmed positive and are being quarantined at a medical institute in Havana.

The other Caribbean countries to report confirmed cases include the Dominican Republic with five, Martinique with four, two in Saint Martin and one in Saint Barthelemy.

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25 Comments

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  1. concerned citizen says:

    When are we going to stop those cruise ships from coming and I hope they cancel that spring Regatta.

    Like 25
    Dislike 5
    • Cruises cancelled says:

      Princess have already cancelled all sailings for 60 days and Viking have cancelled until May 1st. No doubt others will follow suit.

      Like 15
    • @Concerned says:

      And who is going to bear the financial burden of such a move? It’s easy to say stop this, stop that but who will pay the piper? The flu kills people every year and something so easily caught, it will eventually end up everywhere in the world, just prepare and stop panicking.

      Like 13
      Dislike 19
      • Coronavirus is real says:

        The financial burden will be worse if this virus is to spread in this small community. Stop comparing it to the flu! Take preventative measures! The flu is seasonal. We don’t know the capabilities of this virus! It’s not like the cruise ships will be banned indefinitely.

        Like 25
        Dislike 5
      • Yoyo says:

        I wish you get it and see how you recover

        Like 1
        Dislike 1
  2. No stopping says:

    The cruise ships are not going to stop until the cruise lines stop themselves. The greedy government officials need to fill their pockets. Money over the safety of the people. Please line up all Belongers at the port to hug and kiss the cruise ship passengers

    Like 17
    Dislike 3
  3. So much to do says:

    If we have to stop Cruise ship then we have to also stop the planes.

    Like 15
    Dislike 4
    • @So much says:

      Can’t fix stupid. The cruise ship unloads 3000 people or more at a time with no checki if they are ill. A Liat or Silver plane with 30 people each going through immigration can be easily checked and questioned. Have anything else stupid to say?

      Like 24
      Dislike 3
      • At @ so much says:

        The cruise ship passengers leave after a few hours. The visitors by plane stay for days, weeks, months – and like you perhaps never? Just because you had a slow season in your business don’t mean others should. When you were raking in money, living high and jetsetting, living your best life, those taxi men and other business owners held their corner and didn’t even call your name. So you do the same.

        Like 5
        Dislike 9
        • @@@ So much says:

          You are truly a moron. So cruise ship passengers who are on island a few hours can’t give the local population the virus? Only those that stay on the island for days? Obviously a product of the BVI school system, obviously a Belonger and obviously a taxi driver. You should be ashamed of yourself and your comment. Just can’t fix stupid.

          Like 10
          Dislike 2
          • To So much with the @@@ says:

            And if you had stayed in school, perhaps you would have been in the top echelon in your country than having to hightail it to VI, to speak hateful words against our islands, school system,and natives. I tell you something, this wasn’t the time to bite the hand (BVI) that feeds you.

  4. Data says:

    Give us the age and pre-existing health conditions of the persons who are killed by the flu. Healthy people are not getting coronavirus and dropping down dead like it’s being portrayed. I can’t believe people that claim to be so woke, can be so fast asleep.

    Like 9
    Dislike 6
    • @data says:

      If the person is older than 60 or person has existing
      Condition like DIABETES, they do not deserve to live and it is okey for them to die. Is that what you mean? Are you saying the residents of Donovan Home do not deserve to live longer?

      If you think like that, YOU ARE NOT A HUMAN BEING.

      Everyone should help to stop the virus by not spreading it.

      Like 8
      Dislike 1
    • @ Data says:

      You fail to realize that people can be carrier of the disease and exhibits no symptoms. So when they pass it on to persons who have compromised immune systems are you saying that is ok. You are a selfish human being!

  5. Foolish old coot says:

    Now, I wish the morons who are going around saying black people can’t catch the virus, will stop with that foolishness they are going around saying. If you don’t know anything about the virus, go and educate yourself instead of going around proving how stupid you are.

    Like 11
    • Bill G says:

      I think what was said was: Black people are not dying from the virus at the same rate as others. Of course if a black person is already sick, the virus may contribute to their death.

      Stop calling people morons.

      Anyway, can you explain why the Africans are not dropping like flies as Bill Gates predicted?

      • To Bill G says:

        Genius, the person said people are saying black people CAN’T CATCH IT… I guess you’re one of the fools who are going around saying it. A moron is a moron LOL

        Like 2
        Dislike 2
        • Bill G says:

          And you obviously can’t read. I was not quoting “foolish old coat” about black people not dying.

          Now since you are an intellectual and a comedian all wrapped in one, then let’s hear your comments about Africans not dying. Let’s see how much jokes you have left in your tank. If you gonna call someone a fool, then do a complete job.

  6. E. Leonard says:

    The World Health Organization (WHO) has listed the outbreak of the Coronavirus as a global pandemic. The Coronavirus is a serious public health and safety issue that it is showing up around the Caribbean. As such, the VI, along with all other regional sister countries, must take strong actions to prevent, contain and mitigate it. The MHSD has encouragingly rolled out some administrative and engineering actions to address the Coronavirus outbreak. However, in addition to the actions that have been taken, other actions may urgently be needed to flatten the virus infection growth curve, ie, mass testing, social distancing, avoiding large gatherings, quarantine, controlling immigration…….etc.

    Moreover, the VI must strike a delicate balance between public health and safety and economic necessity; public health and safety must take precedence. Tourism is a major economic sector and it is 1/2 of the economic twin pillars; financial services, the other 1/2. Mass tourism (cruise lines) brings the majority of tourists. Though financial services put more revenue in government coffers, tourism provides more direct, indirect and induce employment, ie, hotel workers, taxi drivers, souvenir vendors, beach vendors, retail shop merchants, restaurants service, boat captains, marina workers……..etc.

    Further, the majority of VI tourists comes from the US. Nonetheless, health officials is projecting that between 70-150 million US residents may be infected with the Coronavirus. Clearly, such a high infection rate will result in a huge decline in tourist arrivals and will adversely impact the employment and income of a large sector of the workforce and may impact government’s ability to deliver services. Similarly, a major outbreak in the VI will result in a decrease in tourist arrivals and an adverse impact on employment.

    Moreover, though the VI cannot control what happens in the US, Canada, Europe, China, South America……etc, it must act proactively to control events within its borders to prevent, continue, and mitigate the adverse effects of this pandemic. Government must prepare residents for any emergency actions that may temporarily encroach on some customary and expected freedoms.

    Like 10
    • RealPol says:

      Real talk. This Covid-19 pandemic is some serious s…t. Premier Andrew A. Fahie needs to make a national/territorial address to assure residents that the territory is prepared to deal with this pandemic. During a crisis is when true leaders excel. Some world leaders have fail the test.

      Like 8
      Dislike 1
    • Quiet Rebel says:

      The WHO labeled the Coronavirus outbreak a global pandemic so there is no doubt that it is a serious public health issue. Consequently, government needs to appoint a Coronavirus Czar or a task force to marshal the resources to respond to virus. The Czar or Task Force should brief the territory daily.

      Too many residents are not taking this disease that has already killed thousands, infected thousands …..etc, We cannot wait until it hits close to home to panic and worry about it. We have to plan for the worst and hope for the best, Hear is a news flash. The VI is not immune to this disease and many in other regional sister countries have been infected and some have died. As RealPol noted above, this is some serious s…t so let’s treat as such. This virus can put hurting on our health, economy, growth and recovery, psyche…….etc.

  7. Foot Soilder says:

    Is it panic to take precautions at this stage ? Small steps like having all airport cleaners wearing gloves should be mandatory ;(not panic .) Common Sense Yesterday I saw airport workers mopping and cleaning no
    Gloves . Not a wet blanket but it is when it reaches our shores . Color of skin does does not stop
    The virus . it is washing hands , covering noses , staying home if you have cold symptoms , stay six feet from others and public gatherings . What ignorance !! Build up your immune system and stock up on at least three weeks supply of water and non perishable foods . Then trust the Almighty. America does not have enough kits to test their people
    – Where would the BVI get it from. People do not wait on GOVT . Begin to take individual measure . This is a global pandemic . A global recession would take place . We are not self sustaining . Little agriculture . Shortage of medical workers , few ambulances , Are there enough social workers if there is an outbreak . People, start thinking about preservation . Waiting until it reaches Level 3 to protect yourself ???

  8. Where? says:

    Where is the leadership? Where is the information, daily? Where is the planning including for assisting those businesses that will be worst affected?

  9. E.Leonard says:

    Tourism is a major employer and provides direct, indirect and induce employment for hotel workers, taxi drivers, souvenir vendors, beach vendors, boat captains, marina workers, ferry operators, restaurant operators,……..etc. As such, government had to strike a delicate balance between public health and safety and cruise ship arrivals.

    Undoubtedly, suspending cruise arrivals for 30 days was a tough and probably a gut wrenching decision but public health and safety had to be the priority. Protecting the public is a major governing responsibility. The decision probably will exact some financial hardships on taxi drivers, souvenir vendors and others engage in the tourism sector.

    The question is how can any financial hardships be alleviated? Perhaps the HOA can authorize and appropriate a funding package to help affected personnel in tourism and other areas. Though the focus is on cruise ship 30-day suspension, the other actions are also important in preventing, containing and mitigating the impact of the Coronavirus pandemic.

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