4 new coronavirus cases confirmed Sunday

CTMH Doctors Hospital could begin testing next week.
PCR tests use samples from nasal swabs.

LIVE: For the latest updates on the coronavirus, follow our live blog.

The Cayman Islands has four new cases of the coronavirus, bringing the total number of cases on the island to 12, public health officials confirmed Sunday.

Dr. John Lee, Cayman’s chief medical officer, announced the results during Sunday’s press briefing.

Of the four new positive cases, he said two had travelled recently and two had been in direct contact with family members who had travelled. 

He said they had all been in isolation either since they returned from travel or since they started showing symptoms.

Dr. Lee said the new cases emphasised the need for people to stay home.

“Please stay home, we do not know where you might meet a potential threat from this virus,” he said

As well as the 12 positive cases, there have been 194 negative tests.

A 13th possible positive case, involving a patient at the Cayman Islands Hospital, remains inconclusive.

He said the condition of all of Cayman’s Covid 19 patients was reported to be good, with the exception of the first case – an Italian cruise ship visitor who was recovering from a heart attack when he died from complications associated with the virus.

Governor Martyn Roper and Dr. Lee confirmed the arrival of some 500 new test kits and said there were positive developments in terms of getting more testing on island. The CTMH Doctors Hospital also hopes to have its COVID-19 testing lab operational this week.

Premier Alden McLaughlin said the goal was to be able to test everyone on the “front line”, including medical staff and supermarket employees.

“We hope that we will be able to beef up significantly our ability to test more broadly over the next few weeks,” he said.

In the interim, he said, people should proceed as if anyone could have the virus and limit human contact as much as possible.

The World Health Organization has recommended widespread testing in an effort to isolate COVID-19 carriers, trace their contacts, and prevent the spread of the virus.

“We have a simple message for all countries: test, test, test,” Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, director-general of the WHO, said during a press conference last week.

Full coverage: Coronavirus

Support local journalism. Subscribe to the all-access pass for the Cayman Compass.

Subscribe now