COVID-19 cases nearly double in the last week

COVID-19 cases nearly double in the last week

New infections remain down over 60 percent compared to same time last month

NASSAU, BAHAMAS — While new infections of COVID-19 per day remain well below November levels, cases in the last week nearly doubled over the week prior.

There were 95 cases recorded between December 6 and 12.

During the period from November 29 to December 5, there were 65 cases.

This represents a 46 percent increase.

The cases last week still represent more than 60 percent fewer than the number of cases recorded in the second week of November — 259 between November 8 and 14.

A look at cases week by week shows there were 680 cases between October 11 and 17; 707 during October 18 to 24; 325 from October 25 to 31; 232 between November 1 and 7; and 187 cases between November 15 and November 21.

The Bahamas recorded 8 cases of COVID-19 on Monday — five on New Providence and three on Grand Bahama.

Health officials reported 16 new cases were recorded on Sunday, the majority of which stemmed from New Providence.

There have been 7,698 cases to date.

Health officials expected an increase in cases with the reopening of the tourism product and the Thanksgiving period.

While the reopening appears to have been less impactful to date, the window to determine the impact of the holiday period has not been reached.

According to Director of the National HIV/AIDS and Infectious Disease Programme Dr Nikkiah Forbes, the extent of local transmission should be “clearer in just about two incubation periods”.

Fourteen days comprise one incubation period.

Christmas Eve will mark two incubation periods from the November 26 holiday.

“Essentially, we’re still within the first incubation period of 14 days or two weeks and if there will be local transmission and an uptick in cases associated with this holiday weekend, we would expect it in one to two incubation periods — two to four weeks after,” she told Eyewitness News on December 9.

Of the total cases, 1,394 remain active while 6,081 have recovered.

This represents around 79 percent of cases.

The positivity rate for Sunday stood at just under five percent.

Of the 333 tests performed, three were repeated tests.

That rate increased to 8.6 percent on Monday, with 90 testes performed, two of which were repeated tests.

Twelve people remain hospitalized, one of whom remains in the Intensive Care Unit at Doctor’s Hospital.

The other cases were described as “moderately ill”.

As part of the holiday season, the competent authority — the prime minister — has authorized religious services to operate outside of the curfew hours between December 24 and January 3.

He also authorized a wide range of retail stores to operate on two Sundays this month — December 13 and December 20 — between 6am and 9pm to facilitate holiday shopping.

It remains to be seen if the relaxation of restrictive measures will impact case epidemiology in The Bahamas.