Health Minister: ‘There seems to be a new wave’ of COVID-19 coming
With a rapid increase in the number of positive COVID-19 cases recently, and suspicion that cases are being underreported, Minister of Health Dr. Frank Anthony is encouraging vaccinations as it seems a new wave of the virus is approaching.
“I want to make an appeal to everyone, make sure that your vaccines are up to date, that you have got your booster shots because there seems to be a new wave that is coming and we’re seeing the beginning of that wave so we need to be prepared,” Dr. Anthony said during his COVID-19 update on Friday.
Dr. Anthony stressed that over the last couple of months there has been a decline in testing across the board which results in a low number of positive cases being recorded, yet recently there has been an increase in positive cases.
“COVID is not over, I know a lot of people would want to think so but we are now having an increase in cases despite low levels of testing and we are seeing a number of persons having severe infections that warrants hospitalization,” Dr. Anthony said.
On Thursday, 87 persons were tested; of these, two positive cases were recorded. Six persons are hospitalized at the Infectious Diseases Hospital at Lilliendaal, Georgetown and the Ministry is tracking 71 persons for COVID-19.
Dr. Anthony noted that this is alarming as about four days ago there were very few cases and zero hospitalizations.
This quickly changed over the last three days with persons now being admitted to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU).
He also believes that the number of positive cases may be underreported as the only data the Ministry is able to collect is from recognized testing sites but a number of persons are doing home tests and are not reporting the results to the Ministry.
The Health Minister noted that over the last “couple” of months there has been a decline in vaccinations, but to tackle the rise in cases it is necessary for persons to get vaccinated against the virus and take their booster doses.
He stressed that as the clinical presentation of the COVID-19 virus is closely associated with symptoms of the common flu, persons might be experiencing these symptoms but are mistaking it for flu rather than COVID-19.
“The best way to distinguish between the two is to come and get a test so that you know whether it’s flu or it’s COVID-19.
“But again I think people need to get themselves tested and report the tests to us,” he said.