Bimini emerges as new COVID-19 hotspot

Bimini emerges as new COVID-19 hotspot
Dr Duane Sands.

Health minister: Social distancing proves to be effective tool in flattening COVID-19 curve

Country’s case fatality rate (CFR) at 13.8 percent

NASSAU, BAHAMAS — Minister of Health Dr Duane Sands said today that Bimini has emerged as a hotspot for COVID-19 despite 80 percent of all cases emanating from the capital.

In Parliament today, the minister said the data supports the view that the virus is spreading mostly through community transmission.

The Bahamas has recorded just one imported case and four imported-related cases, while the remaining 75 cases were the result of community spread.

Of the 80 cases, 40 percent were men and 60 percent were women.

Eight people have been hospitalized, and  20 people have recovered from the virus.

Eleven people have died, putting the country’s case fatality rate (CFR) at 13.8 percent.

Sands said notwithstanding the level of morbid illnesses which have contributed to the figure, the CFR is expected to fall as the criteria for testing is liberalized and testing expands.

He said while some are “skeptical, and others are cynical”, the emergency measures and social distancing requirements have proved to be effective tools in the fight to flatten the curve of COVID-19 in The Bahamas.

“While we continue to have cases and the unfortunate deaths, we have managed to flatten the curve by having a maximum of no more than six cases diagnosed on any one day and our acute care institutions have not been overwhelmed with the assessment, management and in-patient treatment of COVID cases,” the minister said.

“We are not out of the woods yet. We must continue the public health and social measures implemented. It is our best chance for us to make the best outcome of this unfortunate situation for all.”

There have been 64 cases in New Providence, seven cases in Grand Bahama, eight cases in Bimini and one in Cat Cay.

On Saturday, five females in Bimini, including two young girls, ages 11 and 15, tested positive for the virus.

None of the new patients had a recent travel history, and have been isolated at home.

Expanded testing began in Bimini last week to capture asymptomatic carriers and limit the spread of the virus.

Sands told Eyewitness News nearly 400 people had been tested in Bimini.

He said more residents were expected test positive for the virus.

About Royston Jones Jr.

Royston Jones Jr. is a senior digital reporter and occasional TV news anchor at Eyewitness News. Since joining Eyewitness News as a digital reporter in 2018, he has done both digital and broadcast reporting, notably providing the electoral analysis for Eyewitness News’ inaugural election night coverage, “Decision Now 2021”.