by Linda Straker
- New Covid cases very disturbing because Grenada has experienced more than 4 weeks without a positive case
- Apparent virus has been in circulation, without detection
- One individual resided in the north of the island; another in the south, and one in the southeast
Health authorities say that the implications of having 3 persons who have resided on the island since March diagnosed with Covid-19 and returned to Trinidad earlier this week, is very disturbing because Grenada has experienced more than 4 weeks without a positive case on the island.
“While there have been no known cases of the virus in at least 4 weeks in the State of Grenada and all contact tracing was conducted on previously tested positive cases, it is now apparent that the virus has been in circulation, without detection,” said the release which was issued after Trinidad announced that its 3 new cases were persons who returned on a repatriation flight from Grenada.
“All 3 individuals are nationals of Trinidad and Tobago who were residing in Grenada during the last 4 months of the Covid-19 pandemic. This means that they contracted the virus in Grenada, from a currently unknown point of contact. One individual resided in the north of the island; another in the south, and one in the southeast,” the release disclosed.
The release which was issued through the Government Information Service (GIS) said it is likely that individuals in communities might have been asymptomatic and, therefore, did not get tested, or individuals exhibited symptoms but, for one reason or another, did not respond to the ministry’s repeated calls for testing.
“The ministry cautions that there is a high and immediate probability of an active spread of Covid-19 in Grenada, and we must, once again, heighten our vigilance.” The release explained that people can test positive long after they are no longer contagious.
“Therefore, these individuals might have been infected some time ago, and are no longer contagious, but both the Ministry of Health in Grenada and the Ministry of Health in Trinidad and Tobago are treating these cases as active, until further testing.” The release announced that an update is set for Monday, 20 July when these individuals are scheduled to be retested in Trinidad.
The ministry is urging citizens to practice proper hygiene, wear masks in public spaces, and maintain physical distancing of at least 6 feet, which means avoiding all mass gatherings or any major social activities. “We cannot stress enough the importance of observing the safety requirements.”
“As we move to reopen the borders of Grenada, it is extremely likely that we will see more positive cases on our shores. We are confident that the policies developed and refined over the last few months will enable us to catch Covid-19 at our borders/ports of entry, and to contain the spread,” said the release.
“Our strict and controlled quarantine protocols have proven to be critical in this regard. So too, has our contact tracing methods. Currently, the contact tracing team that we have assembled is already engaged for this present development and will be combing neighbourhoods to source out any, and all contacts of these three known cases,” the release said.
Health officials, the release said, will continue to do their part. “We plead with all citizens to do your part. The disease may still be present and active on our shores, and we will only contain it by working together. For this reason, we continue again, to urge the public to avoid all social gatherings and to wear masks in all public spaces.”