52 new COVID-19 cases detected in 24 hours

The local count of COVID-19 cases increased by 52 on Thursday, raising the overall total recorded in Guyana to 7067.
Of this number, 6277 persons have made a full recovery. A total of 352 swabs were sent for analysis over a 24-hour period and 52 returned positive results.
The Health Ministry’s statistics showed that along with the 52 new cases, deaths from the coronavirus are still at 170. A total of 3616 males and 3452 females have tested positive thus far.
Seven patients are seeking treatment in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU). There are 19 persons in institutional isolation, 580 in home isolation and 19 in institutional quarantine. The total active cases are 741.
Of the 6277 recoveries – 11 was recorded on Thursday. Meanwhile, Guyana has tested 45,427 persons thus far. For this week, a whopping 159 cases have surfaced.
A breakdown shows that two new cases were detected in Region One (Barima-Waini), seven in Region Three (Essequibo Islands-West Demerara), 29 in Region Four (Demerara-Mahaica), two in Region Five (Demerara-Mahaica), one in Region Six (East Berbice-Corentyne), two in Region Seven (Cuyuni-Mazaruni), two in Region Nine (Upper Takutu-Upper Essequibo) and seven in Region 10 (Upper Demerara-Berbice).
There are still 219 cases in Region Two (Pomeroon-Supenaam) and 229 in Region Eight (Potaro-Siparuni).
Health Minister, Dr Frank Anthony acknowledged on Thursday that law enforcement was assisting health officials whereby persons have breached the national COVID-19 measures. It was highlighted that as many individuals were now aware of what should be done to protect themselves, this knowledge should be practised.
“If you don’t wear your mask, not complying with the orders, then it is going to create difficulties for everyone. While our emphasis is really on education, we know a lot of people know much more about the virus than they did maybe a couple months ago. That’s a good thing, but what you need to do is the knowledge you would have gained over this period of time, you need to practise it,” he said during the COVID-19 update.
While most Guyanese are conscious about wearing a mask in public, there is also the issue of ensuring it is correctly fitted to serve the intended purpose. The Minister noted that while these anti-virus practices were not natural, they were needed in the current circumstances.
“If you wear the mask under your chin, not covering your mouth or nose, then you’re not preventing spread. Lots of time you would see people not complying with the proper wearing of masks. We need to emphasise that…We really need people to comply if we are going to reduce this spread.”

Boosted capacity
This week, a mobile field hospital was donated by the Qatari Government to boost Guyana’s capacity to fight the COVID-19 pandemic. It will be set up in the compound of the Infectious Diseases Hospital, located at Liliendaal, Greater Georgetown.
Presently, health officials are looking at the operational side of the mobile hospital and overcoming the challenges associated with operating it on a 24-hour basis. However, he added that staffers at the Infectious Diseases Hospital will assist with running the facility.
“We had some more discussions. The challenge would be if you’re operating this facility 24 hours a day. You would have to get a shift system, enough staff, and so forth. That can prove challenging…We already have a lot of staff located at the Ocean View facility and, therefore, we thought that it would be not a bad idea to add some more capacity in that compound. We’ll have all the technical and medical people right there who can easily assist with running the facility. That is the paramount consideration.”
The hospital unit was delivered with 60 beds, 60 mattresses, 12 air-conditioners, 60 pillows, 60 blankets, eight carpets, one generator, 20 respirators, 20,000 pieces of small and large medical equipment, and one diesel tank. Because of this, Dr Anthony said hospitalisation could be done easily.
“We now have capacity for hospitalisation and additional capacity in the ICU. These are good things because we don’t know how many people can get infected and if people don’t comply with the basic prevention methods, then we are going to see more people getting sick. It is not something that we desire but we have to face reality as well,” the health official underscored. (G12)