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Jamaica virus infections at 8


Jamaica virus infections at 8

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KINGSTON – Jamaica, where the first case of the coronavirus (COVID-19) was detected earlier this week, Friday reported an additional six new cases, bringing the total number to eight.

Minister of Health and Wellness Minister, Dr Christopher Tufton, is expected to meet with the media later on Friday to provide further information on the latest cases.

Media reports said that among the cases are two men, ages 63 and 67, who came into the island on March 7 from Trinidad, having travelled from Malaysia by way of Dubai and London. They presented themselves at hospital on March 11.

Another patient was taken to hospital from his hotel after arriving here from Manchester, England, while a 31-year-old Jamaican overseas ship worker who came in from the Canary Islands via Portugal and Miami on February 25, was hospitalised on Tuesday.

Among the cases is the 58-year-old father of the first patient who was confirmed with COVID-19. He was discovered ill at home on March 11. A 34-year-old female has also tested positive for COVID-19.

Meanwhile, Jamaica said it would be closing its Consulate General in New York, and the consular departments in Washington DC and London for one week starting on Monday due to the virus.

Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, Kamina Johnson Smith, said the situation will be monitored to see if further extension is required.

“This is a precautionary measure to protect persons from spreading the virus, by limiting nationals having to gather to access services in person and, of course, the transit to our relevant missions,” she noted.

She said that the Ministry has mandated all High Commissions, Embassies and Consulates to assess the risk posed by the spread of the virus in their respective locations and to make appropriate adjustments to their operations.

Johnson Smith has also announced that all of the 589 registered Jamaican nationals scattered across China are healthy and have not contracted the virus, including in Wuhan, where COVID-19  was first detected last December.

She said that currently, there are 260 students studying in China on government and private scholarships, as well as on exchange programmes, and 273 workers and 56 dependents. Of that amount, 28 are staying in Wuhan.

“We continue to give thanks that we have not been made aware of any Jamaicans in China infected by the virus,” she said.