Cayman keeps virus at bay as it rages round world

| 30/12/2020 | 62 Comments

(CNS): Another nine travellers have tested positive here for COVID-19 since Christmas Eve, but as the coronavirus rages around the world, putting more countries back into lockdown, Cayman is keeping the virus at the door. The UK and the rest of Europe, the US, South Africa and many more nations continue to battle with surges as two new mutations of the virus have appeared that spread much more easily than previous variants.

With hospitals full across many countries and Russia finally admitting that its death toll is far worse from the Sars-Cov-2 virus than previously reported, the total number of people killed by this virus is now approaching 1.9 million.

However, more vaccines have been cleared for emergency use, including the UK-based AstraZeneca shot. Despite failed efforts, especially in the United States, to meet targets of vaccinating millions by New Year’s Day, the number of inoculations now available should help public health officials around the world begin the fight back.

Several thousand of Cayman’s first batch of the Pfizer vaccines is expected to arrive on the British Airways flight due next Tuesday and Governor Martyn Roper is expected to get one of the first shots. Although he is not in a high risk category, he is taking the vaccine as a way to encourage members of the public to do likewise.

In the meantime, the massive surges and increased infection rates means that more people than ever around the world will be in lockdown over the New Year’s weekend and few countries will be in a position to safely mark the transition to 2021.

While Cayman has seen no evidence of transmission in the community since the summer, with more than 800 people still in isolation and several people infected with the virus, the increased transmission rates of the new strains puts local front-line workers at greater risk.

The social gathering limit here remains at 500 and the RCIPS are reminding the public that this includes hotels, restaurants, nightclubs, bars, special events and other parties. Organisers are encouraged to use a counting device to ensure they remain within the regulations and attendees are urged to cooperate with them over the rules. The public is also reminded that the use of hookahs, shisha or water pipes is not permitted at any place of business.

Any breach of the COVID-19 regulations could result in a fine of up to $10,000 and imprisonment for two years if convicted.

According to the latest statistics from public health officials here, Cayman has now recorded 326 positive cases of the virus and just two fatalities. There are currently 31 active cases of the virus and seven of those people have COVID-19 symptoms, though none are ill enough to be in hospital.


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Category: Health, health and safety

Comments (62)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    We definitely need to keep the virus at bay and we need to make sure it stays away from Spot Bay, Bloody Bay, Old Man Bay, Red Bay, Hog Sty Bay, Camana Bay, Boatswain Bay and West Bay!

  2. Anonymous says:

    I agree with the need to either require preflight testing of everyone coming to Cayman or shutting our borders all together. Imagine someone infected with the new highly contagious strain arriving in Cayman and breaking quarantine as has been occurring. All that we have sacrificed could be lost.

    Most other countries are now requiring preflight testing. Why are we not doing that too?

  3. ELVIS says:

    I agree. but why cant we just stay safe till we get it?
    more and more people are arriving and it will be in the community before we get vaccinated at this rate. we just need to buckle down.

  4. Coronavirus says:

    Dear fellow humans,

    The world is overpopulated, the planet is slowly dying. We can look at Cayman and see how natural resources are being sacrificed for more buildings, roads, hotels. We all know we are destroying the planet but instead of taking real action we keep kicking the can down the road. We keep eating meat, mowing down more mangroves, dumping waste into landfills, driving our SUV’s, running our AC, consuming items we do not need.
    We are refusing to accept this reality because we do not want to make any uncomfortable adjustments to our lifestyle. In 2020 we are seeing the response of mother earth to this with raging wildfires in Australia and California, a global epidemic and many other climate and human activity related issues.
    Please stop treating this virus as the ultimate enemy that has to be defeated as this is shortsighted. After this virus other issues will present themselves in a never ending cycle because they way we consume this planet is the main issue here. Future challenges of humanity will become more severe than Covid as nature will up the ante if we refuse to change our ways.
    Maybe a virus is the only way mother earth can still control us humans? Maybe the virus has a message for us but we are so busy with ourselves that we are not taking the opportunity to see it.

    • Anonymous says:

      Sounds like you’re advocating for “do not fight the virus” which means let it kill and disable people?
      Yes we absolutely should do better at reducing our carbon output and meat consumption, safeguarding our environment and cleaning up our mess. We should also use all the scientific knowledge and data at our disposal to vaccinate against and mitigate against the deaths and suffering this virus causes.

  5. Anonymous says:

    The US now requires testing prior to boarding for all people traveling from the UK. Why the hell are we not taking the same precaution?

  6. Anonymous says:

    8 travelers tested positive on Tuesday and 4 more Wednesday. Each person with the virus on arrival in Cayman means that other passengers, flight crews, ground staff and taxi drivers are needlessly exposed to the virus. Who is benefiting from this stupidity. Test all people flying to Cayman before they get on the plane!

  7. Anonymous says:

    Sweden and Canada today joined the list of countries making pretesting mandatory. When is Cayman going to do this and why have we waited to do something that is obviously beneficial?

    • Anonymous says:

      Exactly. The government has said that the 14 day quarantine is enough but some of those countries, such as Canada, have both. Plus we are putting the airline and airport staff at risk. And the taxi drivers.

    • Anonymous says:

      Glad they don’t Pre Test. I’m on the next flight in and almost certain I have it but want to sit it out at home.

      Thanks CIG!

    • Anonymous says:

      Yes completely agree – I’m on the next flight from the UK. I have absolutely no objection to being pre-tested, especially with the new variant prevalent in half the UK. Please CIG impose it now. Community responsibility must come before selfish individualism.

  8. Anonymous says:

    Many countries have banned incoming flights or added requirements for pretesting in order to keep their populations safe. More are adopting those same safety measures every day. Has our government fallen asleep over the holidays?

  9. Anonymous says:

    What is the timeline for the vaccine? I must have missed this in the news, but I am curious to know the timeline since the Governor is already getting his shot.

  10. Anonymous says:

    And we need to keep the virus at bay. Every resident of Cayman needs to to their part to ensure that it doesn’t spread here.

    • Anonymous says:

      And our government needs to start requiring pretesting on all flights to keep the new type of Covid out!

  11. Anonymous says:

    Cayman has done very well so far but the procedures used for the old strains of the virus are inadequate for the new more infectious strains. Mandatory pretesting is necessary to even attempt to keep the new strains out and Cayman should give serious thought to shutting the borders now that the need for Christmas shopping trips has passed.

  12. Anonymous says:

    There was an item in the Guardian yesterday that our politicians should take note of in relation to the new virus strains. It is time to either require pretesting for all travelers or to shut the borders as so many other countries are now doing.

    Guardian 29 Dec. 2020

    Prof Andrew Hayward, a member of the New and Emerging Respiratory Virus Threats Advisory Group (Nervtag), told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: “I think we are entering a very dangerous new phase of the pandemic and we’re going to need decisive, early, national action to prevent a catastrophe in January and February.
    “A 50% increase in transmissibility means that the previous levels of restrictions that worked before won’t work now, and so tier four restrictions are likely to be necessary or even higher than that.
    “I think we’re really looking at a situation where we’re moving into near lockdown, but we’ve got to learn the lessons from the first lockdown.”
    He added the rise in cases was “very largely driven” by the new, more infectious variant of coronavirus.

  13. Anonymous says:

    Is Cayman testing those that test positive for either of the new more infectious strains? What steps are being taken to ensure that people don’t get infected while traveling to Cayman with people who are infected given that the new strains are so much more infectious?

  14. Anonymous says:

    When is mandatory pretesting going to be introduced? After the virus gets loose in Cayman???

  15. Anonymous says:

    As long as Marc Langevin is not in charge we should be okay. I see that Bermuda is still accepting tourist from Canada under their “safety” measures. All they need is an airline willing to bring them in.
    https://www.royalgazette.com/tourism/news/article/20201230/air-canada-axes-sole-flight-due-to-coronavirus-slump/

  16. Anonymous says:

    What is the procedure for receiving the vaccine as an older person? Is there a list? How do you get on that list? Will Dr.Lee or someone make a an appearance and let us know? It’s ok saying the Governor will be first to show an example even though not in a high risk category, how are those in this category going to be notified? Hopefully not by voter registration list.

  17. Anonymous says:

    I’m very thankful to be living here, and proud of the historic and responsible work we all did as a society to get us where we are. Everyone collectively contributed to that success in their own way.

    In light of the newer and much more contagious in-bound strain, we trust that CMO, Cabinet, and Travel Time Advisors are adjusting their assumptions, criteria, and perhaps rethinking the pace of “repatriation” flights as a whole, with an eye on our very limited ICU/ventilator capacity, and recent reminders of honor-system breaches.

    Just because there is available air-capacity, or quarantine vacancy, doesn’t necessarily mean that hospital cases will remain statistically manageable. We have been comparatively fortunate.

    • Anonymous says:

      Explain that to Skylar and her entitled family.

      • Anonymous says:

        Skylar was a bug on our windscreen and we’ve hit the wipers and spray on that. But for a handful of imported dishonorable, the Cayman Islands, through the willing cooperation of her residents, have accomplished what exceptionally few modern societies have managed anywhere else in humanity…and despite varying levels of PTSD from earthquakes. We are allowed to be proud and thankful for that fact because it is extraordinary.

        • Anonymous says:

          It’s not, actually. If you open a newspaper you’ll see that there are many countries in the world in a BETTER position than Cayman with FAR larger populations: Vietnam and Taiwan to name but two. Also, if you know how to look at a map, you’ll see that those two countries are close to ground zero, Wuhan.

          Sick of the holier than thou Caymanian pat oursleves on the shoulder BS.

          • Anonymous says:

            The previous poster that you criticised wrote “exceptionally few” which is accurate. But then why bother with accuracy when you are looking for a soap box.

          • Anonymous says:

            Boi you hurt..

            A little speck territory in the Caribbean actually got something right 😘

          • Anonymous says:

            Get lost!

    • Annie says:

      This new more infectious strain of the virus is spreading. Let’s test people before they travel. Seems like common sense to me.easy to do.

  18. Elvis says:

    Im sosorry but its really not at bay that much. Its here, we have a variant of the virus and still we say we are winning this battle. Its a war ok? Why cant we keep our guard up until we win the war?
    Alden i hope your reading you really need to close the border because when this strain gets in it will kill your people and me.
    Act now

    • Dana says:

      Elvis, the new strain is NOT more deadly or dangerous… it’s merely more highly contagious. If we all get vaccinated, it will help immensely.

      • Anonymous says:

        Dana, it is not more deadly but it is definitely more dangerous because it spreads much more easily. If we import it the new strain will spread like wildfire.

      • Anonymous says:

        Problem Pfizer isn’t a blocker where Moderna is. one who gets vaccinated with Pfizer still can tramsit it

      • Annie says:

        This new more infectious strain of the virus is spreading. Let’s test people before they travel. Seems like common sense to me.easy to do.

    • Annie says:

      Everyone who can get vaccinated has a moral duty to do so. We are doing it for those who are comprised. I would love to know how I can get in the queue for the vaccine. Thx CNS for keeping us updated. Government seems to want to keep us in the dark. Mushroom mentality is disgusting.

  19. It's no joke says:

    I bet many countries wish they had taken harsher decisions earlier. Let us try to help each other more, in an effort to keep everyone safe. I understand that people who historically worked in the tourism industry are distraught, but I encourage them to think of other areas where their skills are an asset, if only until this settles down. Cayman is blessed every day.

    • Anonymous says:

      …and to be creative about financing through this temporary valley. Accept the free professional business advice that has been offered; issue service voucher booklets; apply for an equity-backed bank loan; sell some equity to new investors; issue private interest-bearing bonds…there are a sufficient local market of wealthy Cayman-resident investors that already assume life will resume by 2022, and perhaps, in some form, sooner. Tap them.

    • Anonymous says:

      As I posted earlier this year the UK was sleepwalking into the Apocalypse by not slamming the doors in March. If the person who argued with me then that they had it all under control is still reading CNS – how do you feel now? Pretty stupid is my guess.

    • Anonymous says:

      If tourism workers haven’t already thought of “other areas where their skills are an asset” then they are WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAY behind the curve. Sadly, it will be at least as long as it has been before things even begin to improve in the industry. The borders “opening” in March is false hope. It is utterly unrealistic as it hinges on vaccination of enough residents of Cayman and visitors…..supply of vaccines and logistics in giving them will take a lot longer than that.

  20. Anonymous says:

    I hope someone from RCIP will be watching Tillies tomorrow night. I’m sure they’d rather pay the fine though and reap all those dollar bills. Oh wait, the law doesn’t apply to Dart owned properties (Coral Beach)… you can do what you want! Enjoy

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