NASSAU, BAHAMAS — Minister of Health Renward Wells said yesterday that a spike in cases may be expected over the Christmas holiday, but he insisted that cases are trending in the expected direction.
While new infections of COVID-19 per day remain well below November levels, cases in the last week nearly doubled over the week prior.
However, the health minister noted there was an expectation that cases would have increased after the Thanksgiving holiday, because “Bahamians love to shop in Florida especially on Black Friday”.
“We expected there would have been maybe perhaps a small uptick. We did see a little bit of that,” Wells said.
“The numbers are trending in the direction we are expecting it to go in now.
“We are monitoring and looking after the Christmas holidays when all of us get together with our families…that there may be an uptick in the numbers.”
As of Monday, the number of COVID-19 cases in the country stood at 7,698.
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.
Wells noted there was an increase in cases on Grand Bahama on December 9 with 38 cases and December 10 with 23 cases.
Of the 38 cases, seven cases were from a freighter tanker that went to the island with individuals who weren’t feeling well and had to be tested.
Another eight members of the crew tested positive the next day.
Wells also advised that the Ministry of Health surveillance team has moved from the Melia hotel on Cable Beach to a more secure building.
He said: “We are doing the business of the Bahamian people and seeking to ensure that we have the requisite surveillance team, contact tracing and all of the equipment in place for any eventual surge in cases. But we are hoping, praying we do not see that.”
Bahamas Doctors Union (BDU) President Dr Melisande Bassett yesterday told Eyewitness News doctors are prepared for a potential third wave of the virus in The Bahamas.