NASSAU, BAHAMAS — More than 43 percent of all coronavirus cases in The Bahamas since mid-March have recovered, though new infections continue to climb daily.
As of yesterday, there were 2,721 confirmed cases of the virus.
There were 1,183 recovered cases and 1,457 active cases, the latter of which represents 53 percent of total cases recorded.
Another two percent or 63 people have died, while less than one percent or 10 deaths were being investigated and another 8 deaths were non-COVID-related, patients who died of another illness.
New Providence continues to lead with 1,780 cases, accounting for 65 percent of total infections, while Grand Bahama follows with 591 cases, representing nearly 22 percent.
On the remaining 12 islands reporting cases of COVID-19, Abaco had the highest number of infections with 95, though this represents just over three percent of total cases.
In an address to Parliament, Minister of Health Renward Wells presented a breakdown of the demographic of cases, which reflects that 48 percent of all infections were women, while 52 percent were men.
The data is in contrast to earlier figures in the first wave, which saw women, impacted at a higher rate than their counterparts as of April — though there was no quantitative reason for the disparity.
According to Wells, 41 percent of cases comprised of individuals between the ages of 20 and 39, while 36 percent were among those between 40 and 49.
Yesterday, there were 64 additional cases confirmed.
Of the new cases, there were 55 in New Providence, two in Grand Bahama and three in Crooked Island, three in Inagua and one in Mayaguana.
There were also 69 hospitalized cases.
Testing, which has a direct link to identifying cases, has been strategized to conserve existing resources, according to Wells.
As of Wednesday, nearly 14,000 tests had been performed.
According to the health minister, the government has sought to shore up the health infrastructure an increase bed capacity by just shy of 100 additional beds.
Providing a breakdown, Wells said the bed capacity in the Legacy Unit of PMH has been increased from four to eight;
The South Beach Urgent Care and Referral Centre, which has been designated to assess and treat individuals with symptoms suggestive of the virus and mild to moderate cases has 11 beds.
There are another 16 beds at the Cancer Association of The Bahamas in Grand Bahama; seven in the Grand Bahama Health Services system; 22 in Doctors Hospital West with additional five beds at Doctors Hospital East.
There are an additional 62 beds at the National Response Facility at the SuperClub Breezes resort for medical and surgical non-COVID minimal risk patients, to ensure the hospital beds remain available for the critically ill.
The resort facility is not used for COVID patients.
“Mr. Speaker, though we have significantly increased our bed capacity, we continue to explore avenues of increasing our in-country nursing capacity to fully maximize our expanding acute care bed capacity,” the minister said.
Wells has announced the government will source health workers locally and internationally to address a shortfall as more healthcare workers are impacted by the virus.
At last report, there were 194 health workers, including physicians, nurses and allied health staff unable to deliver care. Well said this continues to significantly impact care delivery.
The government will spend $10 million on renovations at PMH.
This includes a new entrance, isolation rooms, a wound care center and enhanced security in the emergency department; expansion of the Agape Family Medical Clinic; the conversion of old operating theatre suites into a 19-bed inpatient suite; improvements to the Male Surgical Ward.
The renovations are expected to be completed by the end of this month.
Another $21 million has been allocated for the phased redevelopment of the Rand Memorial Hospital in Grand Bahama, according to Wells.
He said work was progressing steadily.
The first phase of the project, which began in April and involves the main entrance, foyer, pharmacy, admissions and pediatrics is 80 percent completed and expected to be completed by September 29.
Works to the East Wing, public corridor, healing gardens and chapel was 45 percent completed and expected to be completed in November, Wells said.
Meanwhile, the restoration of the main operating theatre suites, post anesthesia unit and central sterile supplies department was 95 percent completed.