COVID reporting grinds to a halt as surge continues

| 29/10/2021 | 233 Comments
Cayman News Service
Senior Forensic Scientist Christian Taylor operates a machine used in PCR testing

(CNS): The rapid community spread of COVID-19 showed no signs of letting up Thursday, despite an estimated 2,000 people in isolation. The General Post Office in George Town, the prison, the port and the Water Authority, as well as several more schools, have all been impacted by positive cases over the last two days. Indoor bars are being badly affected and several were closed Thursday, and the virus is now hitting banks, stores and numerous other commercial entities. But by 8:30pm no official figures had been released on how many people are now COVID positive. The rapid flow testing policy for schools had also failed to materialize and GIS has said there will be no press briefing Friday.

People were queuing around the block for drive-thru testing at the Doctors Hospital yesterday, and although rapid tests have been on sale in pharmacies and supermarkets this week, every location has reportedly now sold out, as an anxious community facing a sudden rise in cases, despite the high vaccination rate, seeks an efficient way of finding out their COVID-19 status.

The virus is a communicable disease and even in the absence of a policy surrounding the use of these tests, people who are testing positive are reporting their positive home kit results, adding to the stress on Public Health and the confusion and unsustainability surrounding self-isolation and quarantine. It is also causing problems for workers who find out that they are positive but their employers still demand that they come to work until they have an official positive test from Public Health.

Meanwhile, the Flu Clinic located at the Cayman Islands Hospital is expanding its opening hours until 11pm at night on weekdays to reduce congestion at Accident and Emergency, which is currently under renovation, and deal with the increased number of people attending because of COVID-19. The clinic hours are now Monday to Friday 8am-11pm. The dedicated Flu Clinic helps to isolate those with flu-like symptoms that may have COVID from the general patient population and potentially reduce opportunities for transmission.

Medical Officer of Health Dr Samuel Williams-Rodriguez said strict prevention measures such as social distancing and wearing of masks were in place and he urged people to call the Flu Hotline before going to the clinic to reduce the risk of exposure to COVID-19.

“Although influenza activity last year was minimal largely due to COVID-19 prevention measures such as mask wearing, predictions on what this year’s flu season will look like have varied,” he said. “This dedicated facility will allow us to better manage patient flow and an increase in cases due to COVID 19.”

The Public Health Department is awaiting their annual supply of flu vaccine but hopes to begin the flu shot campaign next month.

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Category: Health, Medical

Comments (233)

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  1. julia says:

    Its a funny thing about bubbles….they always, sooner or later, pop.

    • Anonymous says:

      Some idiots in cayman thought their bubble would never burst and they would be the only territory in the world to have no covid in the community. So stupid. Scientifically impossible.

      • Anonymous says:

        The Government caused the virus to spead like its doing, making only 5 days quarantine time. Not prosecuting people for breaking the isolution time causing others to do the same. The Brac and Little, only one of the two, vaccined OR negative test, Should been that people wanted to go to the Brac/ Little should have to be Vaccined AND tested negative, both not only one.

  2. Anonymous says:

    As I read these comments, I shake my head and wonder what has happened to my people.

    This whole thread has been about the government not doing anything or telling them anything. Do we need them to have a press briefing everyday to tell us the same thing over and over again. What else can we do save from putting us back in lock down again? That is not the way out of this and we cannot continue to be locked up.

    Does the government need to tell anyone anymore to wash your hands? Does the Government need to tell you to social distance? Does the Government need to anyone to wear a mask? Does the government need to tell you not to go out an party in large crowds? Does anyone need the government to tell them to go get vaccinated?

    What has happened to our good ole common sense? Has it left us completely and we need a press briefing every day for someone to tell us the same thing and then go out that night and break every rule again?

    Listen, in the current situation, only someone without a lick of common sense would be throwing big parties, not wearing masks and not social distancing. Why can’t we get it throw our thick skulls that covid is real and it is here to stay and in order to do that we must follow the protocols laid out for us by the Government.

    Every time I go into Fosters to buy my groceries I know to wear my mask and I expect the guy but the door to spray my hands and I go an extra step further and sanitize my shopping cart before I use it. Do I need Dr. Lee or Wayne Panton to tell me this everyday? No, absolutely not! I know if I am going out amongst other people that I need to wear my mask and stay as far away as I can from them.

    The other day I heard on the news that a bar had a number of cases amongst its employees but was still having a large event 2 nights later. Now I am not saying don’t patronize this establishment but for God’s sake when you go there, use your common sense, social distance and take some hand sanitizer with you to use. By the way, the onus shouldn’t only be on us to use our common sense but the bars owner should be using his/hers as well.

    Last Thursday, I was seated across the way from these 3 young women at a local restaurant and I could overhear their discussion about getting or not getting vaccinated. One says with all these covid cases now I believe I should go get mine. The other two showed her no support telling her that she was putting poison in her body just because she might catch a little flu. Of course there was the anecdotal conspiracy theory or two thrown in to convince her not to go get vaccinated. whether this was sarcastic and I guess I will never know, one of the other says ” I guess I will have to go get mine soon too because I promise to take my children to Miami with me to do Christmas shopping. As I listened, I couldn’t help but think, is shopping for Christmas the only reason you and your family are holding out to get vaccinated? Shouldn’t it be about protecting you and your family? Does anyone see now why I am worried that we have all lost our damn common sense.

    • Anonymous says:

      So true. Astonishing that some people are not double jabbed by now. Utter madness. And people complain about us opening the border on November 20 about a year after every other developed nation, when we’ve had 18 months since the pandemic began and vaccinations available since February. Some people in cayman really do live in a crazy silly bubble but I guess they say ignorance is bliss.

  3. Caymanian says:

    This is by design not default. What did Donald Trump say again, stop testing and the numbers won’t go up. Their version is stop reporting and they won’t see how bad we f’d this up.
    How did this all go horribly wrong?

    Simple. A bad testing system built around an all but archaic theory which says 6ft and 15 mins.
    This theory came from the 1800s. Science has proven that germs can travel up to 16ft through the air and last, as small droplets, for hours.
    You can in fact catch covid in a matter of seconds under the right set of circumstances and these are not 1 in a million but closer to 1 in 20. A well placed cough or sneeze in a direction can be taken in directly through the nostrils. Hands up who has been in the company of someone who coughed or sneezed in their general direction.

    Ok. Thats why this spread. We need mass testing. PCR Cayman to death.

    • Anonymous says:

      To tell you the truth, I haven’t seen anyone cough or sneeze without contorting themselves to hold it in or cover it for about 2 years.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Gonna be safe and in the clear when border opens if you keep up at this rate.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Mask up. Social distance. Stop hanging out in crowded places.

    • Anonymous says:

      I wish it were that simple…. Go and walk around World Gym (or any of the others) to see absolutely minimal mask wearing and/or social distancing.
      Covid breeding grounds if ever you saw one.

      • Anonymous says:

        If I were you, I would stay away from that particular gym. If the owner is not responsible enough to find ways for people to exercise without putting them at risk then someone needs to be reporting them to the Police and hopefully the Police will do their job properly to effect a prosecution.

      • Caymanian says:

        Places who do that should be shut down.

  6. Anonymous says:

    And the hysteria continues regardless of the data. Emotions rules this place, critical thinking is dead.

    • Anonymous says:

      Maybe because we have an ill prepared government who are not addressing the public. Just making shitty bite clip YouTube videos thinkings it’s sufficient, rather than answering questions from the media (burning questions that members of the public have). There is nothing wrong with feeling angry, uncertainly and or scared when you have a government who is clearly out of their depth.

      • Anonymous says:

        Take responsibility for your own well being!

      • Anonymous says:

        @8:31..Addressing the the public for what? Do we want the comfort of them telling us them same thing over and over and even when they do we still criticize and find fault.

        If we don’t listen and we don’t care then what is the government supposed to do, keep rehashing it?

        Here is a press conference if you need one for today!

        1 Take responsibility for yourself and those around you.

        2. Wash your hands and ensure proper hygiene particularly when out in public.

        3. Social distance and stay away from large crowds.

        4.Wear a mask.

        5. Get tested if you feel you have been exposed or have any symptoms.

        6. If you are positive, alert Public Health and stay home for the required time.

        The majority of us are vaccinated so our symptoms should not require hospitalization but if they do call the Flu line or 911 in case of emergency.

        Hope this helps..

    • Anonymous says:

      Tuesday 26th figure was one of the worst daily case figures in the world, according to JHU data. Wednesday’s 154 made us excel in cases relative to population.
      If you go to you’ll see a graph of cases, likely including the UK at the top of the graph – but this isn’t the highest. You won’t be able to add Cayman to the list, but, you can see a hierarchy of the worst countries in the world by 1, unchecking the countries that appear in the graph, and 2. sorting the list. These figures are per million of population. Latvia is at the top with 1.29K per M.
      Convert Cayman’s 90 in a day figure to a per million figure. Start by dividing 1M by our population: 1M/70,000 = 14.3. For Tuesday’s 90, multiply 90 by 14.3 gives 1,287 ie. 1.29K/million, equal to the worst in the world cases per day (for yesterday). Some easy controls need to go in place yesterday.

  7. Anonymous says:

    Someone asked what a “Cabal” was – “A cabal is a group of people who are united in some close design, usually to promote their private views or interests in an ideology, a state, or another community, often by intrigue and usually unbeknownst to those who are outside their group. The use of this term usually carries negative connotations of political purpose, conspiracy and secrecy.” Source Wikipedia

  8. Anonymous says:

    For those blaming this administration, I don’t believe any politician, with their unique mix of arrogance, nonsensical bluster and general ignorance, could do any better. They all have to rely on the executive branch, and the blinding incompetence of our civil service means that the same bumbling, fumbling mess that we now have to endure would have arisen whichever government is in place. The PPM can count their lucky stars that they got out in time and can now sit smugly on the sidelines firing all those cheap shots at the same actions that they’d have made too had they still been in office.

    • Anonymous says:

      They would have made them better because at least they have balls! Alden never once shied away from answering questions from the media, no matter how ridiculous and question may have been or how often he may have been asked it. This government hides behind YouTube videos that they send out, without allowing our news reporters to ask questions. It’s sick.

      • Anonymous says:

        You could put everyone one of the PPM members together and the only balls you would find would be a small pair on Barbara.

        They are nothing more than a bunch of sore losers, that like Trump will never ever concede that they lost the election. Their quest for power is not lost on anyone. They will do any say anything to undermine and bring down the government.

        Everyone know that they were very beholding to outside parties who supported and financed them and expected for them to be returned and so they could get their invest back tenfold in other ways. The PPM is now feeling the pinch financially as well and are slowly dying on the vine as people watch their stupidity and lack of genuine concern for the people continue.

    • Anonymous says:

      The evidence strongly suggests that you are spewing tripe. Alden is on record as saying during one press briefing that those who would put the economy and money over human lives, if they disagreed with his government’s Covid mitigation policies are welcome to leave because he knew they were largely persons devoid of common sense, who, regardless of having “papers”, really did not belong here. Alden et al had plan and they stuck to it. I have no doubt that they would have devised a plan prior to announcing a reopening. In contrast Panton and his Clown Car are driving around in the dark and hitting every Covid epidemic pothole it is possible to hit. It is not even a remote likelihood that Alden and his Cabinet could have done worse than Panton and his minions. Speaking of of our pathetic government, in the face of a rapidly rising Covid crisis, Premiere Panton has decided to leave the islands and attend a climate conference. Yup, a true leader that. [NOT!]

      • Anonymous says:

        I am sorry but Alden himself is largely to blame for the current irrational fear many people here have about Covid. It was Alden who intimated very strongly that the CI Govt would not allow anyone to die of Covid which was probably the most irresponsible, arrogant and stupid thing I have ever heard a politician say.
        It is not any Governments job to save every individual irrelevant of the cost to the nation. It was Alden’s ego speaking then and the fact that he has never walked back from that position shows how dangerous he really is.
        In the last month we have had someone die in a road traffic accident and another person die when they fell off a party boat. I did not hear any politician, especially Alden state we should stop all cars driving or stop all boats operating. Those deaths were preventable but society was not prepared to pay the cost of stopping all cars and boats. Similarly we have reached a point where the vast majority of people now realise we need to move on with life and we need to reopen our society, our economy and our country to the outside world. With the fact that 80% of our total population is vaccinated, I don’t see a problem with this. It was Alden himself who said we would reopen the country when we hit about 70% vaccination and we are well past that number.

      • Anonymous says:

        A plan? Thanks, but I ain’t buying that!

    • Anonymous says:


  9. Donna Kaye Mitchell says:

    Just don’t understand why Government did not restrict the number of people at gathering as soon as the increases began – standard procedure around the world. Feeling they have dropped the ball.!

    • Anonymous says:

      PACT did not drop the ball – they took it out in a boat and threw it into the Cayman Trench.

    • Anonymous says:

      In my opinion: ALL commercial flights into The Cayman Islands should have been “stopped” from early 2020.
      Now we have the product of our mistake.
      This past summer when the covid was/is raging around us we continue to allow the influx of people from covid infested places. Disgraceful.
      And we allowed, especially, some expat teachers to visit their homeland that is infested and return back to the schools… also I understand that hundred and hundred of children were brought here by chaperones – my guess is that they are in our schools right now. Despicable. Who is in charge? We need a critical thinking leader – if we don’t make the hard calls we are going to be in deep deep problems.

      • Anonymous says:

        If you hadn’t “allowed” teachers to visit their families, you wouldn’t have any teachers to teach your children now. Or were you planning to keep them prisoner here?

      • Anonymous says:

        @7:54pm – what about the Caymanians that visited countries “that is infested” with COVID and came back to Cayman? Or is it only ex-pats that spread the virus?

        Care to expand on your claim that “hundred and hundred of children were brought here by chaperones”

        What are you even trying to imply?

        That COVID positive children and their chaperones, who have no legal right to be on island, were smuggled into the Islands and infiltrated our school system to spread COVID?

        Wouldn’t someone notice that “hundred and hundred” of children were missing? What about their parents? Wouldn’t they report their children missing? Or are the parents a part of the scheme? What about the chaperones, what part do they play in this? I have so many questions.

        Seriously, the ignorance of your comment is breathtaking.

      • Anonymous says:

        Had to be those expats. Couldn’t have been those residents who flew to Miami for parties and Walmart?

    • Clouseau says:

      We’re already restricted to 100 indoors & 250 outdoors..

      What more do you want?

      • Anonymous says:

        A lot less. If you consider the r0 of the Delta variant, i.e., 6-7. Do the maths, if of course, you know what the r0 is.

      • Anonymous says:

        These figures are out of the sky. Crowd density is a major factor. If everyone were 10ft away from each other they’d be virtually no risk, but they’re not, and never will be.

    • Anonymous says:

      You do know that crowd restrictions are in place right? The government can put these rules in place until the cows some home but if the Police don’t arrest and make examples out them the one that decide to do this still continue to do it.

      We need to report these incidents and the Police really needs some training on how to gather evidence so that the Prosecutors are not having to drop or lose cases because of lack of evidence.

      Maybe what we need to do is evoke citizens arrest. When these things happen we need to video it and help the law to do its job properly.

  10. Anonymous says:

    We need to stop testing all these asymptomatic people. SHould only be testing symptomatic primary and secondary contacts

    • Anonymous says:

      Says the person who knows nothing about the suppression of virus transmission.

    • Anonymous says:

      Stupid comment. Asymptotic doesn’t mean a person doesn’t have the virus and can spread it.

  11. Anonymous says:

    All it took was one idiot with a runny nose panicking and rushing to the ER.

    • Anonymous says:

      What a condescending swipe. What if your so called “idiot” was a child, a mother or father, a sibling, or anyone concerned with the safety of their family? I bet your use of the term “idiot” would be much different if it were one of your fellow members of the wealthy class.

  12. Anonymous says:

    We need to know how much toilet paper we should be buying.

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