Two COVID-19 positive tests with no travel link

| 31/03/2020 | 63 Comments
Cayman News Service
Chief Medical Officer Dr John Lee at Tuesday’s press briefing

(CNS): Chief Medical Officer Dr John Lee said two of the latest batch of 13 test sample results for COVID-19 are positive from patients with no travel history to countries with confirmed coronavirus cases or direct connection to someone who has. Dr Lee urged people to stay home, as he confirmed the certainty of community transmission in Cayman. Neither of these patients were admitted to hospital but are isolated at home, though one had visited the HSA. Public health is also tracing their contacts.

“It is important to say now, not only for this point but also from the point of the extensive investigations that public health are undertaking on the people that we have reported over the last two to three days, we should accept this condition… is in our community and I implore everybody to stay at home,” said Dr Lee at Tuesday’s daily coronavirus press briefing update.

He confirmed that before the results of these two positive tests were knon, a lot of work had already been done by the Public Health Department to trace and talk to the people with whom the patients have had direct contact.

Dr Lee confirmed that just 220 people to date have been tested, with 14 positive results plus one that is inconclusive; the rest were negative. Currently, there are still no sick patients in the hospital waiting for results. And these are the first two results that have confirmed the long suspected community spread.

Despite the low numbers of people believed to be unwell or testing positive, Cayman and its people must now understand that anyone and everyone could have this novel coronavirus. With Cayman’s continued chronic shortage of tests and low testing numbers, the spread of the virus could be extensive.

Given that it is now accepted that the virus spreads regardless of whether or not its host is symptomatic, it is only a matter of time before it reaches the elderly, those with underlying health conditions and other vulnerable people, unless the community follows the curfews and extensive protocols to protect each other.

Dr Lee said that keeping a distance from others, washing hands and staying home is the only way to curtail community spread. He said that identifying the districts of these patients without enough data is meaningless, pointing out that everyone in Cayman travels across the community because of their integrated lives. Therefore, every area is affected, regardless of the patient’s home district.

Responding to the confirmation of local transmission, Premier Alden McLaughlin noted that he has repeatedly stated that everyone here should have been behaving as though the virus was already in the community. Now it is a certainty, he was hoping it would help deliver the message to stay home, he said.

Nevertheless, McLaughlin said he will not impose another full round-the-clock curfew or lockdown. He said people need to eat during this period, which could last for up to two months. The premier added that we all need to rely on self-preservation and people behaving “as though your life depends on it — because it really does”.

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Comments (63)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    I blame Alden why would he put health and environment in the hands of someone so incapable.

  2. Elvis says:

    Look at the traffic Mr Premier. please lock it down for a week please?

    • Anonymous says:

      I couldn’t even deposit my pay cheque at an ATM today. Told go to an ATM at a branch. Butterfield doesn’t have one if these east of GT.
      Grateful I have a weekly cheque but have to drive to deposit! Employee will not organise online payment. Sigh

  3. Anonymous says:

    He is not doing anything. Giving orders is not “doing”. He already said the Dump isn’t going to be his problem. Ruined economy would be also for someone else to deal with.

  4. Anonymous says:

    The virus has been in the community long time, with the affected having mild symptoms. large scale testing needs to be done but I understand there is shortage.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Don’t like this unity gov however, Alden has and is doing our little Island good by standing up and making some much needed hard choices. It’s tough love from here on out.

    Hopefully the hard choices that have affected everyone can be remedied in the future with more pro life and pro nature decisions and lifestyles instead of the over developing fiasco mindset we had in place before.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Anyone from public monitors hazardous medical waste disposal? That should include face masks, gloves, tissues wipes, cleaning cloth? Or it all ends up in the Dump exposed to elements?
    Are there bright and visible signs in public places including hospitals where to throw used tissues, gloves and masks? Are there designated bins?

    • Anonymous says:

      Dr Lee mentioned this very briefly some days ago in connection with isolating a family member, but otherwise nothing!!!

    • Anonymous says:

      The garbage men weren’t wearing masks collecting today. You think they are being careful with that? Ha!

  7. Anonymous says:

    Fair and effective prosecution is essential to a properly functioning criminal justice system and to the maintenance of law and order.
    The decision to prosecute or not to prosecute is of great importance.
    Director of public prosecutions is an administrator of justice.
    DPP serves the public and not any particular government agency, law enforcement officer or unit, witness or victim.
    The members of public are impatiently waiting for DPP’s decision on prosecuting McKeeva Bush. It would send a clear message to people if compliance with laws is mandatory or optional.
    If one is arrested and charged for non compliance with a curfew, but a public official who committed a battery is neither arrested nor charged, people want to know on what legal basis he’s got off the hook.

    • Anonymous says:

      And this has what to do with the story of two more cases of COVID-19 in our community?

      • Anonymous says:

        Compliance with laws. I might refuse to comply with curfew or quarantine and if I am arrested, I’d ask why Mr.Bush wasn’t.
        Don’t bring “ spreading risk” argument in your comment. Domestic violence is on a rise, why not if it is not prosecuted. Death from the virus or being chopped by a BF, abused by a cousin? What do you choose?

        This is the matter or principle. So don’t start your insults.

        • Anonymous says:

          Seriously? You might refuse to comply with the curfew, and put yourself, your family and others at risk for death, because McKeeva Bush isn’t being prosecuted RIGHT NOW to your like for an assault? I didn’t insult you with the first comment – that was a question – but I will now: You are a complete ass.

        • Anonymous says:

          Call me when the shuttle lands.

  8. Anonymous says:

    Inventors are coming up with new ways to keep you healthy and hopefully prevent the spread of illnesses like the coronavirus.

    “About the only thing I know that is true about the future is that will be different from today,” said Dr. Tom Smythe, a finance professor at Florida Gulf Coast University.

    Fusion Welding is among those innovating not only for today but for the future.

    You think differently about touching a door handle or a gas pump or how you go about your daily life,” he said.

    That’s why Beaner created the “no hands door pulls,” an invention that lets you open a door using your foot, so you can avoid getting germs on your hands.

    “As I think about how many times I touch a door handle a day, I think about how many times I’m picking up germs, so with that, I’m hoping that it helps at least a little bit.”

    Beaner and his team can produce a thousand of the door pulls every day, and hopes to see them on doors across the community.

    “Really everywhere, every bathroom door, every commercial entrance door could have one.”

    Beaner said he’s working with distributors now to get his product on doors all over Southwest Florida

    • Anonymous says:

      Foot flush toilets too. After spending some time living in Asia where bidets are common. On returning home, I installed them as an accessory to my existing toilets They are more hygienic and require a heck of a lot less toilet paper!

  9. Anonymous says:

    We don’t hear anything about testing results from Brac/Little. Can someone please provide this information to CNS for publication – thank you.

  10. A non Amos. says:

    It really pains me to type this. But I believe that Alden is doing a great job with the COVID crisis. Put every other national crisis aside (and there are many! Poor public education, pushing the cruise port agenda down our throats, the dump, I could go on), but Alden as really taken a dramatic turn from the seemingly run-of-the-mill greedy politician, to a true leader of a nation in a time of crisis. I soooo want to hate Alden for the whole cruise port fiasco. But he is really making amends with the COVID crisis. Keep it up Alden. Change your legacy.

    • Go Team (except Jon-Jon - he really doesn't add anything) says:

      It’s okay to respect him for his (and his team’s) handling of the current crisis; and to dislike him for his stand on pretty much everything else. It doesn’t redeem him for the other projects – it just recognises that he’s doing a good job on this one.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Judging by the traffic on the road, people think we’re over it. Loads of cars on the road. We should be in total lockdown. Seems like we’re getting complacent.

  12. Anonymous says:

    Supermarkets are among the remaining key interaction zones. Customers, staff and security still seem to have no clue that there is an international emergency afoot. What agency is going to enforce sanitation, the safe handling of our food supply and the enforcing of 6ft distancing within aisles? If the supermarkets don’t think it’s important to do these things, who is going to fine them or intervene? Why is the leadership still letting private businesses dictate the conditions of their operation during a life and death medical crisis? Nobody checking ID, no 2 item limits…still all fable policy…and a check out pen used by hundreds!!

    • Anonymous says:

      Checking IDs is like spreading the virus. Plexiglass shields to protect cashiers are being installed in the US supermarkets. Why you’re not doing the same?
      Can some businesses start working on face shields?
      Human behavior is difficult to change. Start working on minimizing risks of exposure .. Face masks, face shields, no hands door pulls. is all being done by small businesses or individuals elsewhere in the world. Why you are so inert sitting and waiting?

    • Anonymous says:

      The policeman & employee with the hand sanitizer were p***** with me when I would not walk between them – they were standing two feet apart at best. I said I had my own hand sanitizer (which I showed) & then asked them to step back so I could safely go past them. I got that lovely tooth suck in reply.
      Instead of having to show my licence (not my problem they can’t read it from 6’ away) maybe do it by odd & even car reg that they can see as I enter the car park, without wanting to get in my face.
      Before you say ‘shop online’ there are no available slots for online or collection gif the next 7 days!!

  13. Anon says:

    The next Island Games are due to be held in Guernsey, one of the British islands in the English Channel between Britain and France.The population is around 65,000 similar to ours and until recently they only had a few cases of Covid-19. They have however suffered from community spread and cases now number 78, increasing every day. The lesson to be learned is that once this plague is amongst us we cannot afford to be too careful. The Premier is right to institute curfews and we must all obey the rules if we are to avoid the catastrophies experienced in the U.S and parts of the E.U. Our lives are at stake!.

  14. Elvis says:

    Alden u need to do a 5 or 7 day total lockdown it won’t be difficult, what I’m seeing now is total madness out there lock it down before we regret it please.

    • Anonymous says:

      All vehicles should be limited to the driver only OR the police should stop vehicles with two or more people and find out where they’re going with more than one person.

      • Anonymous says:

        Got stopped at a roadblock this morning. They were stopping everyone. Trouble is, what does that achieve? People can just say they are going shopping or to the take away, or on their way to take exercise. Even the name restrictions only apply to the supermarkets and banks. The regulations need to be more specific if you want to limit people being out and about. Start with one person in the car – shouldn’t take more than that to visit the supermarket or Burger King, and if you want to exercised , walk or run from your house and back to it, or ride a bike.

  15. Anonymous says:

    Test, track and trace. This should be our focus.

  16. Anonymous says:

    CIG and civil service response has been outstanding. i was also a critic. Not anymore. My employees and I are working at home while civil servants are out risking not only their lives but their families too.

    Kudos to the all the cashier shelf stockers restaurant staff and delivery personnel .

    • Thank you!! says:

      YES!! The cashiers and shelf stockers at the supermarkets, the police, the EMTs, the bank staff, the people still cooking at and running the restaurants (big up Fosters Camana Bay and Carnivore! My lifeline!), the food delivery drivers, the couriers, the immigration and customs people that are STILL WORKING. Thank you, thank you, thank you all. You are keeping the Cayman community ALIVE! 👏🏽

    • Anonymous says:

      Kudos to essential services such as water, CUC, internet providers as well as garbage guys, supermarket workers, medical personnel, pharmacists, delivery people etc!! We depend on you and you are doing an amazing job.

  17. Anonymous says:

    How can people with no more money left, still need to pay rent to greedy landlords, find help.
    They cant go to town, there are no buses.
    Seriously, were do they go for help ?

    • Anonymous says:

      6:44 Not all landlords are greedy. You living in a place you need to be able to pay for it. Accommodation in life isn’t free. I know many landlords who have been considerate in these times and have dropped the price of rent for their tenants who are struggling. Don’t paint all with the same brush. The landlords often still have bills to pay or a mortgage to pay off. You expect them to live off nothing to? As for town have you considered waling or cycling? Good for ones health.

      • Anonymous says:

        Understandable. But many US states prohibited utility companies from cutting off utilities and landlords from evicting people during epidemic.
        You do know that a court order is required to evict a tenant in Cayman?

      • Anonymous says:

        Many landlords have mortgages to pay.

      • Anonymous says:

        And if you evict your current tenant, who do you think will rent your apartment or house? A bird in the hand – even a wounded bird – is worth two in the Bush because those two birds are going to fly away. Many landlords right now have no one in their rentals and no prospects over the next 8-18 months to rent them to others (and the Airb&b people are in a big jam too). If those people have mortgages, they are facing having to pay 100% by themselves for an extended period of time. If you are lucky enough to have tenants right now, the best advise is to work with them the best you can to make sure you at least have some income.

      • Anonymous says:

        @8:19pm Yes we ALL live in accomodations that we “should” be able to pay for but who are you to make such a statement? No one could have ever predicted to be in this situation and it has affected all. Last time I checked rent in Cayman is not cheap especially for families.

        Not all landlords are bad persons and some truly do their best to work with their tenants. How would you feel if you had nothing and people turned their back to you? Just cut your attitude because it’s not helping anyone.

        • Anonymous says:

          9:25 I haven’t got an attitude with anyone. Just stating that these times are tough for everyone. Not just renters. I took offence to 6:44’s comment labeling landlords as greedy when many are decent people just trying to make a living. Rent is expensive on this island but that is due to supply and demand and government allowing an increase in insurance and strata costs.The rent has gone up to cover these expenses. I’m afraid if you cant afford to live here you shouldn’t consider Cayman as a place to live. I’m sure lots of people would like to live in Monaco but there are very few people who can afford it.

    • Anonymous says:

      hey…let me paraphrase alden as he is implying to expats…
      if you can’t afford to be here….leave.
      if you can’t afford your accomodation…call your landlords bluff and move out.
      how does that medicine taste to you?

  18. Anonymous says:

    Yea and just the other day he was cussed and dragged thru the mud. Now a different tune.

  19. Anonymous says:

    I’m here in the U.K. 🇬🇧 and Cayman Government is doing a really good job. Here is really a mess, because even still U.K. have not imposed any form of curfew. I know Caymanians want to return home, but even going straight to Nando isolation puts people there at risk because there is a belief the virus 🦠 lingers in the air. Caymanians/residents of Cayman in UK have also been on social media confirming they have Covid19. The Government is between a rock and a hard place for sure because you can’t refuse someone who has the legal right to come home. Stay safe!

    • Anonymous says:

      Stop spreading fake information. The virus does not linger in the air. Alden has said mandatory isolation for returnees at a supervised facility. Its that or stay in the UK.

      • Anonymous says:

        MIT Study now suggests Coronavirus can linger in the air for up to 4 hours.

        • Anonymous says:

          MIT suggests … Under what conditions? Please refer to the specific article, thanks.

          • Anonymous says:

            On the brighter side, MIT study also suggests coronavirus spreads more slowly in hot, humid climates. We have six or seven weeks until rainy season, when it gets even hotter and more humid. The study is based on how the disease has spread so far. Florida is somewhat of an outlier, but that’s probably because of the spring break debacle and the fact that Florida is not taking a strict approach to social distancing.

  20. Anonymous says:

    I am very proud of our Government’s response to this unprecedented crisis in terms of containment. Great job, especially given assurances that the BA flight passengers will be isolated away from their residences. Next issue is the economic impact. I hope wise guidance is ahead.

  21. Anonymous says:

    Positive cases with no travel history!

    Stay home people. It’s bad!

  22. Anonymous says:

    Dr Lee and Alden are doing a fine job with this. And that is not easy for me to say- I am usually the CIG’s harshest critic.

    Good wishes for the fourteen unlucky ones. I hope they all recover soon.

    • Anonymous says:

      Not 14. I wish it were so.

      • Anonymous says:

        Since you seem to have better information than the government and chief medical officer, please enlighten us to how many it is, if not 14.

    • Anonymous says:

      the majority have already recovered…and no-one is in hospital.

    • Anonymous says:

      I Just wish they would remove Dwayne Seymour from the daily update announcements. What a load of tosh he speaks. He goes on and on and on, and yet says nothing – except to promote the silly jingle competition!

      • Anonymous says:

        9.19am Maybe we shouldn’t blame him for all the “tosh”, as he reads it all from notes written for him.

      • Anonymous says:

        Not forgetting the comedy routine of mangling a foreign language, and his call for fasting and prayer as “the only way to beat this”.

        • Anonymous says:

          Have we seen any evidence of his fasting?!? LOL
          I agree. Please remove him from the panel. Put Dr Lee there & put the minister in the good doctors background seat.

      • Moi says:

        Too true. It is embarassing to watch. I cringe when he starts his shuffling of his ‘script’ that he can’t even decipher. Wish the camera would pan out to show the Gov and Premiers faces. They must be squirming. I know I am!

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