COVID-19 hospitalizations nearly double
Cases increase 23 percent week-over-week
NASSAU, BAHAMAS — As new coronavirus cases climbed to the triple digits on Saturday and hospitalizations continue to rapidly rise, former Minister of Health Dr Duane Sands said yesterday the increase in infections ought to be taken seriously.
He noted that the healthcare sector and its professionals cannot sustain the influx.
“If you want to continue to enjoy the resurgence of economic activity, then we have to double down on our COVID interventions, precautions, to make sure The Bahamas remains as safe as possible,” he told Eyewitness News.
“The best way to kill an economic resurgence is another spike in COVID cases.
“The message is not resonating. We aren’t collectively understanding the relationship between economic recovery, national welfare and COVID.
“We are not in a good place. Understand that my vantage point is somewhat different than many and that is that I, as a healthcare provider, have a significant COVID practice and so, I will probably be one of the canaries.
“Those of us who care for COVID patients will see things before the reports reach elsewhere, and we are seeing signs of worsening of the whole COVID situation.
“I can say without fear of contradiction that the staff caring for COVID patients are spread thin. They are working long hours and we are inundated with patients with symptoms suspicious of COVID, symptoms of actual COVID, diagnosed COVID.
“When you see this number of people in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU), you have to take it seriously because you cannot sustain this.”
In the past week, from July 11 through 17, there were 401 cases confirmed in The Bahamas.
In the prior week, July 4 through 10, 324 cases were confirmed in the nation.
This represents a 23 percent increase in cases over the two-week period.
A look at hospitalizations and deaths over the same two periods shows a bleaker picture.
Hospitalizations have increased 49 percent in the last two weeks.
There were 51 cases hospitalized as of July 3.
That figure rose to 58 on July 10 and to 76 as of Saturday, with 13 in the ICU.
Last week, COVID-related deaths rose by 11, compared to the seven the week prior — a 57 percent rise.
There were 250 deaths as of July 3.
That figure rose to 273 over the weekend and included eight deaths that had been under investigation but were reclassified as COVID deaths.
Those eight deaths occurred between April 7, 2021 and May 20, 2021.
On Saturday, The Bahamas recorded another 100 infections, including 83 infections on New Providence, seven on Grand Bahama, seven on Eleuthera, two on Exuma and one on Abaco.
Up to Saturday, there have been a total of 13,566 cases, of which 1,100 were still active.
Both Grand Bahama and Eleuthera recorded seven cases each on Saturday.
Four new cases were recorded on Grand Bahama on Friday, while Eleuthera recorded three.
When contacted, Central and South Eleuthera MP Hank Johnson said he had not been briefed by the island’s medical team and would reserve comment until he had reviewed the COVID-19 numbers.
Earlier this year, Andros, the Berry Islands, Bimini and Cat Island all had new restrictions temporarily imposed in an effort to mitigate rising COVID-19 cases.