COVID cases on the rise

COVID cases on the rise
(FILE PHOTO)

Holiday activities still not yet reflected in the data, says Forbes

NASSAU, BAHAMAS — New coronavirus cases increased 16 percent last week compared to the week prior, though Yuletide festivities have yet to be reflected in the data on COVID-19 cases.

The data was gleaned from the Ministry of Health’s COVID-19 dashboards over the last few weeks.

There were 80 new infections recorded last week.

The week prior, December 20 to 26, 2020, there were 69 new infections.

This represents a 15.9 percent increase week-over-week.

There were also increases on New Providence, Grand Bahama and Exuma.

Last week, there were 58 new cases on New Providence, compared to 55 the week before.

On Grand Bahama, new infections rose from nine between December 20 and December 26, 2020, compared to 13 last week.

Meanwhile, on Exuma, new cases rose from three to four week-over-week.

In an interview with Eyewitness News, Director of the National HIV/AIDS and Infectious Disease Programme Dr Nikkiah Forbes said health officials have observed the uptick in cases, but the potential impact of relaxed measures and activities during the holidays has yet to be fully seen.

Director of the National HIV/AIDS and Infectious Disease Programme Dr Nikkiah Forbes. (FILE PHOTO)

“Holidays gatherings can increase the chance that COVID-19 is transmitted, or the virus that causes COVID-19. That includes Thanksgiving, the Christmas holiday,” she said.

“There was a slight uptick in cases after Thanksgiving. We’re still in the period, after the Christmas holiday and the New Year holiday; we won’t see the full results of a potential increase of COVID spread because of the Christmas and New Year’s gatherings. It’s about two to three weeks after those holidays happen.

“So, we’re still watching.

“But it is very, very important that we all remember that you need to protect yourself and others in terms of keeping to public health measures will help a lot to try to mitigate spread if there is going to be an uptick associated with those holidays.”

The Bahamas recorded 10 new cases on Sunday, all of which stemmed from New Providence.

Twelve people remained hospitalized and were moderately ill.

Of the 7,924 total cases, 1,458 remain active.

Another 6,239 cases have recovered.

This represents a recovery rate of 78 percent.

A total of 53,068 COVID-19 tests have been performed in The Bahamas.

This includes the private sector.

According to the Ministry of Health, 228 tests were performed on Sunday.

Of these, two were repeated tests and two had inconclusive results.

The puts The Bahamas’ positivity rate at just over four percent.

There have been 175 confirmed deaths since the onset of the pandemic in mid-March.

This reflects a mortality rate in the nation of 2.2 percent, which is within the global standard.

Fifteen deaths remain under investigation.

Another 37 people died as a result of other illnesses.