Woman dies as Covid-19 cases spike   

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The Ministry of Health (MOH) on Saturday reported the death of a 66-year-old woman who had contracted the coronavirus (COVID-19).

 This takes the total number of deaths from the pandemic to 1,233. Also on Saturday the ministry recorded 44 new cases with two persons in the Intensive Care Unit. The woman of Region Four was unvaccinated, the ministry said in a press release. “The MOH expresses sincerest condolences to the families of the deceased and will make every effort to provide all the necessary support during this difficult time to render any assistance needed. The Ministry is also appealing to the general public to respect the confidentiality of the deceased and his family and to allow them to mourn their tragic loss in peace.”

Meanwhile, the ministry has encouraged citizens to continue to observe the public health measures set out by Ministry of Health. These include: the need for everyone 12 years and older to get vaccinated against COVID-19; the need for correct and consistent use of a face mask when leaving your home;  the importance of maintaining the six feet physical distance from others and; the need for good hand-hygiene to help reduce the spread of COVID-19. If anyone is displaying any of the symptoms associated with COVID-19, or need any additional information, kindly contact the COVID-19 Hotline 231-1166, 226-7480 or 624-6674 IMMEDIATELY or visit us at www.health.gov.gy.

While the omicron variant was the dominant COVID-19 strain earlier this year, its subvariant known as BA.2 now accounts for the majority of coronavirus cases globally. Due to the signs and symptoms of affected COVID-19 patients in Guyana, Minister of Health, Dr. Frank Anthony, said it is possible that the variant is circulating in the country.  “What we’ve seen in the Americas is the circulation of the BA.2 (variant)…so that is something we probably have here in Guyana. It’s much milder, but it’s more transmissible. It can cause hospitalisation especially for persons who are older and unvaccinated, and we are seeing a few cases of persons getting sick and requiring hospitalisation,” Dr. Anthony said.

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He noted that the ministry will be sending samples to the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) for testing. “We would like to confirm which variant is circulating, so obviously we’ll be taking samples and trying to verify with CARPHA and other institutions what variants are circulating.” The minister is meanwhile urging those still unvaccinated to get inoculated, especially those with comorbidities.

There are currently 638 active cases across the country, with Region Four being the hotspot region.

Dr. Anthony noted that the number of positive cases might be “under represented” stating that, “I think it’s an under representation of what is happening in the country because there are people who might be testing, and they’re not reporting to us, because there’re lots of self-testing kits that are available to people,” he said. Persons are reminded to wear a facemask in indoor spaces, ensure proper ventilation and get vaccinated against COVID-19. As of Friday, 86.1 percent of the adult population took the first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine while 66.6 percent has been fully vaccinated. (DPI)



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