By RASHAD ROLLE
Tribune Senior Reporter
THE Bahamas recorded 38 new cases of COVID-19 on Wednesday, the most since November 16 when 56 cases were confirmed.
Seven of these new cases “tested positive for COVID-19 onboard a cargo vessel sailing in Bahamian waters near Grand Bahama,” the Ministry of Health said in its COVID-19 report yesterday.
“Consequently, all positive COVID-19 cases have been isolated on the vessel and none of its crew members were permitted to disembark,” the ministry said.
Seventy-four cases of COVID-19 have been recorded in the last week. This compares with 67 the week before and 134 the week before that.
Health officials did not offer further comment yesterday on the uptick in the cases.
However, yesterday marked 14 days since the US Thanksgiving holiday. The COVID-19 incubation period is 14 days.
In an interview with Eyewitness News earlier this week, head of the country’s infectious diseases programme Dr Nikkiah Forbes said: “We’re still in the waiting period. Thanksgiving was the 25th of November. And that was exactly two weeks ago now. But we know that around that holiday weekend people travelled.
“So, essentially, we’re still in the waiting period. It’s generally two to three weeks — one incubation period and then the days following the incubation period where people will start to maybe have symptoms of COVID-19 or develop COVID-19 in the long end of the incubation period and if there is local transmission that should [be] clearer in just about two incubation periods.”
The new cases include 22 men and 16 women.
Fifteen of the new cases are in New Providence, 20 in Grand Bahama (with seven isolated on the aforementioned cargo ship), one in Bimini and Cat Cay, and two in Exuma.
Meanwhile, 14 COVID-19 cases are currently hospitalised, 13 of whom are moderately ill and one of whom is in the intensive care unit.
Eleven recoveries were recorded yesterday.
Twenty-four COVID-19 deaths are currently under investigation, with 163 total confirmed virus deaths to date.
Five hundred and forty-five tests were completed yesterday.
That is double the number of tests conducted every day since November 28 when 418 tests were performed.
To date, the country has recorded 7,312 confirmed COVID-19 cases.