St. Vincent and the Grenadines, on Thursday, confirmed 55 new COVID-19 cases, 52 of which are nationals with no recent travel history, bringing the total number of local cases under investigation to 80.
The development has triggered a revision of the number of persons who can attend indoor and outdoor gathering, and the number of passengers who can travel on public transportation.
Three cases are non-nationals who arrived in the country between Dec. 31, 2020 and Jan. 4, 2021 with negative PCR test results, and subsequently tested positive during quarantine.
The National Emergency Management Organisation (NEMO) said there are five distinct clusters to which most cases can be linked.
Contact tracing, further linking and testing related to all of these local cases are ongoing.
SVG has now recorded 204 cases of COVID-19, of which 102 remain active.
All positive cases will continue to be isolated until cleared by two negative tests, NEMO said.
NEMO further advised that the protocol for mass gatherings has been revised and effective today, Jan. 8, indoor gatherings must be limited to 10 persons and outdoor gatherings to 20.
Additionally, public transportation vehicles will be required to limit the number of passengers to six fewer than the number of passengers they are licensed to carry.
As a result, an 18-seater van should only carry 12 passengers; a 22-seater, 16; and a 28-seater, 22-passengers.
The protocol for the entry of travelers to SVG has also been revised and effective Monday, Jan. 11, all travellers from high-risk countries must stay 14 days in a quarantine facility.
Travellers from a medium risk country must stay seven days in a similar facility.
The public is strongly urged to continue to wear facial coverings, sanitisze hands regularly and maintain physical distancing as far as possible.
Persons with flu-like symptoms such as sore throat, fever and cough are advised to go to the nearest district Flu Clinic ensuring that they wear appropriate facial coverings. Persons with flu like symptoms should not use public transportation where possible. The Flu Clinics in the nine health districts are:
1. Kingstown Health District – Kingstown Health Centre
2. Pembroke Health District – Buccament Polyclinic, Layou Health Centre,
3. Chateaubelair (North Leeward) Health District – Coull’s Hill Health Centre, Chateaubelair SMART Hospital
4. Marriaqua Health District – Levi Latham Health Complex, Evesham Health Centre, Lowmans Windward Health Centre
5. Calliaqua Health District – Stubbs Polyclinic, Belair Health Centre
6. Cedars Health District – Biabou Health Centre, South Rivers Health Centre
7. Georgetown (North Windward) Health District – Georgetown Health Centrel, Sandy Bay Health Centre, Owia Health Center, Fancy Health Centre
8. Northern Grenadines Health District – Port Elizabeth Hospital
9. Southern Grenadines Health District – Celena Clouden Hospital, Mayreau Health Centre, Canouan Health Centre.