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Trinidad records nine more COVID deaths, gets help from US


Trinidad records nine more COVID deaths, gets help from US
Trinidad & Tobago prime minister, Dr Keith Rowley - FP

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Port of Spain – Trinidad and Tobago Monday reported nine deaths and 294 cases of the coronavirus (COVID-19) as health officials also confirmed an increase in the number of the Brazilian (P1) variant of the virus.

The Ministry of Health in its latest bulletin said that the new cases were for samples taken between May 13 and 16 and that the number of positive cases on the island since March last year is 16 549. It said that there were now 5 885 active cases and 294 deaths as a result of the pandemic.

According to the ministry, 388 patients are in hospitals, while 370 are in state sanctioned quarantine and 5 082 in home isolation.

Meanwhile, Chief Medical officer, Dr Roshan Parasram, confirmed that the island has now recorded 40 cases of the Brazilian variant but that “none of them have been attributed or related to any of the deaths that we have gotten”.

“What we see is the general trend . . . in terms of the age group of those persons affected by COVID-19 that would have had mortality. More or less the trend remains similar,” he said, telling reporters that new facilities are being prepared to accommodate COVID patients requiring intensive care.

“We are in the process of getting ICU’s set up at the Point Fortin Hospital . . . and with the field hospitals coming on stream hopefully by Wednesday there is further ICU and High Dependency Unit capacity in those facilities.

“We have not reached full capacity as yet, but again it depends on how the cases go.”

The United States government Monday handed over two field hospitals estimated at US$1.5 million, providing the Ministry of Health with 80 additional hospital beds and reducing the current strain on the parallel healthcare system.

A statement from the US Embassy here said that at the request of the Trinidad and Tobago government, it expedited the delivery and setup of these hospitals that “can be used to provide essential medical services to the civilian population in the event of a disaster”.

Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley, the Health Minister Terrence Deyalsingh and the Chargé d’Affaires Shante Moore, toured the field hospital at the Jean Pierre complex on the outskirts of the capital.

“Chargé Moore officially transferred ownership of the hospitals to the Government of Trinidad and Tobago and commended the Prime Minister on his ongoing efforts to deal with the pandemic, emphasising that “we must all work together to stop the spread of COVID-19,” the Embassy statement added.

Meanwhile, Jamaica recorded 77 new COVID-19 cases and three deaths over the last 24 hours, bringing the total number of confirmed cases to 47 396, with 22 898 active, and the death toll to 863.

The authorities said that the deaths included two women and that the new cases range in age from one year to 86 years including 39 females.

There have been 157 recoveries, for a total 23 281. The authorities said 149 patients are hospitalised, with 23 being critically ill.

One new positive case of COVID-19 – a male – was diagnosed on Sunday, from the 276 tests, Barbados health authorities said Monday.

It said 10 people recovered from the viral illness and were discharged. And, there are currently 86 persons in isolation.

Barbados has recorded 3 968 confirmed cases of COVID-19 (1 917 females and 2 051 males) since the start of the pandemic in March 2020. There have been 3 932 recoveries, while 46 people have succumbed to the virus. (CMC)