No new approvals for giant gatherings; all previous approvals suspended
Health officials to make announcements on free testing and N-95 masks this week
NASSAU, BAHAMAS — The Bahamas had a record variety of COVID-19 cases in a single day over the weekend, with 330 cases confirmed on Christmas Day, taking the variety of cases within the country to 23,960.
Health officials advised that 320 new infections were confirmed on New Windfall, three on Grand Bahama and one each on Abaco, Eleuthera, Exuma and Andros; while three infections have locations pending.
We’re working to acquire treatments for COVID-19 and we’re taking steps to boost our hospital capability.
– Minister of Health and Wellness Dr Michael Darville
The variety of energetic cases, as of Saturday, stood at 1,294, though hospitalizations were relatively low with just 19 cases.
There have been 713 COVID-19-related deaths for the reason that start of the pandemic in March 2020, with one other 38 under investigation.
The numerous spike in cases comes as officials indicate that the more transmissible omicron variant is believed to be in country, though gene sequencing on samples sent abroad has not confirmed this.
In a press release on the marked increase on Sunday, Health Minister Dr Michael Darville advised that the federal government will announce details for the rollout of free COVID-19 testing on New Windfall and may even provide details regarding the distribution of free medical-grade masks.
Darville said: “We’re working to acquire treatments for COVID-19 and we’re taking steps to boost our hospital capability.”
The Ministry of Health also advised on Sunday that it is going to not approve any large gatherings and has suspended all current approvals.
Several holiday events had already received approval for gatherings of as much as 300 individuals with COVID-19 protocols in place, Eyewitness News understands.
On Friday, Prime Minister Philip Brave Davis said The Bahamas might be headed for the worst phase of the pandemic.
“We’re taking a look at a number of extremely difficult weeks ahead due to the omicron strain of the COVID-19 virus,” he said.
With day by day cases greater than tripling in recent days, Davis announced new precautions to mitigate COVID-19 that can see stricter measures on the borders and on social gatherings.
In keeping with the newest rules, an indoor gathering should be limited to not more than 20 people, while outdoor gatherings could have as much as 30.
To enter The Bahamas, a visitor must present a travel health visa.
The traveler must either be fully vaccinated and present a negative COVID-19 test or health clearance letter, and if not fully vaccinated, a negative RT-PCR test or health clearance letter.
The latest omicron variant continues to spread swiftly all over the world and has develop into the dominant strain in the USA.
Data shows that while omicron stays more transmissible, it doesn’t appear more deadly or severe.
Cases in The Bahamas increased by 1,226 over the past month, with the country confirming 22,734 cases as much as November 25. On the time, there have been just 254 energetic cases and 17 hospitalizations.
As of December 23, there have been 154,157 fully vaccinated people within the country, including Bahamians and residents who were fully vaccinated abroad and registered their jabs with the ministry.