Guyana records 2 more COVID-19 deaths, 88 new cases

…145 cases in St Cuthbert’s Mission

Two more persons who had tested positive for the novel coronavirus died on Wednesday, taking the COVID-19 death toll in Guyana up to 137.
The victims – a 74-year-old male from Region 10 (Upper Demerara-Upper Berbice) and a 74-year-old woman from Region Four (Demerara-Mahaica) died while receiving care at medical facilities.
Guyana has recorded three deaths from the novel coronavirus thus far this week. The week began with the COVID-19 death toll at 134.
Meanwhile, the updated COVID-19 dashboard for Wednesday shows that Guyana has recorded a whopping 88 new COVID-19 cases.
This now brings the country’s total number of coronavirus cases to 4618 – 2420 males and 2198 females.
However, of the total number of cases, only 866 are active. This figure comprises 10 persons in the COVID-19 Intensive Care Unit (ICU) at the Georgetown Public Hospital and 856 in isolation: 56 in institutional isolation and 800 in home isolation.
There are also 33 persons in institutional quarantine.
Some 3611 persons have recovered from the life-threatening disease locally.
To date, Guyana has tested a total of 23,103 persons for the novel coronavirus.
A breakdown of the 88 new cases recorded on Wednesday shows that five were detected in Region One (Barima-Waini); one in Region Two (Pomeroon-Supenaam); six in Region Three (Essequibo Islands-West Demerara), 65 in Demerara-Mahaica, five in Region Seven (Cuyuni-Mazaruni), one in Region Eight (Potaro-Siparuni) and five in Upper Demerara-Berbice.
The other regional figures remain the same, with 34 cases in Region Five (Mahaica-Berbice), 81 in Region Six (East Berbice-Corentyne) and 376 cases in Region Nine (Upper Takutu-Upper Essequibo).
Meanwhile, Health Minister, Dr Frank Anthony during his daily COVID-19 update on Wednesday disclosed that the number of cases in the Indigenous community of St Cuthbert’s Mission on the Mahaica River has gone up in the past 24 hours to 145.
On Tuesday, the Minister reported that there were 97 cases in the community. Since then, the Ministry has boosted the capacity of the medical team there with the addition of another doctor.
“We continue to monitor the residents of St Cuthbert’s and we continue to do testing. [On Tuesday] we took off an additional set of swabs… We expect that as we continue testing, we will find additional persons who will test positive and we have put restrictions on movement in and out of St Cuthbert’s Mission,” he noted.
According to Dr Anthony, the Guyana Police Force and the Civil Defence Commission (CDC) are assisting with these restrictions.
He added too that the Village Council in St Cuthbert’s Mission has also been cooperative in the efforts undertaken by Government to protect residents there.
He further noted that the CDC has already been to the community to distribute hampers to families in the midst of the lockdown.
Since taking office, the People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C) Government has embarked on a massive testing drive to ensure that all positive cases, especially asymptomatic cases, are detected.
While there are adequate COVID-19 tests available to continue this, Dr Anthony posited that more have been ordered.
“We’ve already started to put in new orders so that we can have adequate stock. You would recall about mid-August, we bought about 40,000 test kits; we had another donation of about 10,000 from the Government of Barbados. So, we have about 50,000 test kits that we’re operating with. But we don’t want to run short so we’re constantly buying,” he noted.
The Health Minister further outlined that in addition to using the PCR test kits, they were now looking at using the rapid antigen test kits. He noted that the two tests would be done together.
“We’ll do the antigen rapid tests and if it’s necessary, we will go to the PCR testing. So, we have a protocol being worked out and we will roll out those antigen tests very shortly especially in the interior communities,” he stated.
According to Dr Anthony, they are looking at having some 20,000 antigen tests in the initial phase. (G8)