(NEWS ROOM GUYANA) — Minister of Public Health Volda Lawrence in a pre-recorded message on Wednesday confirmed Guyana’s fifth case of the novel coronavirus.
The fifth person, like the other cases, are all related to the first case confirmed on March 11th.
“We have since as of today confirmed four additional cases – all family members of the index case –bringing our statistics to five confirmed cases inclusive of one death,” the Minister said.
At the weekend Guyana confirmed three added cases.
She added: “We are in the process of contacting, tracing and quarantining those contacts…our health officials are working assiduously to contain the spread of COVID-19 and to keep the numbers down.”
Lawrence spoke of the order signed by the President which seeks to implement sweeping measures to combat the spread of the disease.
The News Room earlier spoke with Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Shamdeo Persaud who noted that seven samples were sent for testing. He said the Ministry wants to be guaranteed of the results before sharing since some samples have to undergo several tests before showing confirmation.
He noted that only persons who show symptoms are tested. These symptoms can take as much as seven days to show up while some persons are less likely to show any symptoms at all.
Guyana has been supported in the acquisition of test kits by the Pan American Health Organisation, the regional arm of the World Health Organisation.
According to Dr. Persaud, health authorities have been able to contact with an estimated 70 persons who may have come into contact with the woman who came from Queens, New York and died of COVID-19 on March 11; 15 family members are under close surveillance.
These persons include those who were on the same flight, as well as taxi drivers and relatives and friends.
In addition, authorities are monitoring an estimated 45 public and private health care workers.