CMO urges continued COVID-19 vigilance to avoid summer surgeFriday, June 18, 2021
KINGSTON, Jamaica — Chief Medical Officer (CMO) Dr Jacquiline Bisasor-McKenzie, has called for continued adherence to COVID-19 infection prevention and control measures during the summer period to avoid another virus surge.
Speaking during yesterday's virtual COVID Conversations press briefing, Dr Bisasor-McKenzie said: “We are going into a danger period. If we take the experience from last year … during the summer period, there were various activities and events that would have led to increased exposure and an increased transmission rate, so this is not the time to let go of your precautions,” she said.
The CMO noted that as of Wednesday, June 16, the major COVID-19 indicators have shown a decline, including communities that had consistent positive cases over the last two weeks.
“We now have 243 communities of the 783 communities that have new positive cases over the last two weeks [which is] 31 per cent of communities,” she said, noting that the decline puts Jamaica's geographical spread into the medium-level range.
But only less than 25 per cent community spread is considered ideal for the health ministry.
Meanwhile, the island's positivity rate of 10 per cent is still too high for the ministry to consider any more relaxation of social distancing measures at this time, Dr Bisasor-McKenzie said.
“Where we need to get to is below five per cent for us to feel comfortable, especially approaching the summer period,” she indicated.
The CMO added that hospital admittance data have also shown fluctuations, meaning the country's positivity rate is still too high.
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