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Grand Bahama Passenger Has Now Tested Negative For Covid-19

A Bahamasair flight carrying Bahamian nationals and residents makes its way along a taxiway towards the airport terminal Friday in Freeport, Grand Bahama. The flight was part of a repatriation exercise the Government implemented to bring nationals and residents home from Florida. (SURGE Media Photo/Tim Aylen)

A Bahamasair flight carrying Bahamian nationals and residents makes its way along a taxiway towards the airport terminal Friday in Freeport, Grand Bahama. The flight was part of a repatriation exercise the Government implemented to bring nationals and residents home from Florida. (SURGE Media Photo/Tim Aylen)

By RASHAD ROLLE

Tribune Staff Reporter

rrolle@tribunemedia.net

THE Grand Bahama passenger who initially tested positive for COVID-19 has now tested negative for the disease, the Ministry of Health reported on Tuesday night.

The passenger arrived in Grand Bahama on Friday, May 8, and was part of the government’s exercise to return Bahamians and residents home who were still abroad due to travel restrictions related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

It was discovered after the aircraft landed in Grand Bahama that this passenger was on the flight. Three individuals traveled with this passenger.

On Sunday, Prime Minister Dr Hubert Minnis said the passenger tested positive for COVID-19 ahead of his arrival home and should not have been on the flight. At the time, he said the passenger and three others with him had been retested and officials were awaiting the results.

On Tuesday night, officials said the passenger has now tested negative for the disease.

“The passenger was tested twice upon arrival in Grand Bahama by the Ministry of Health’s Surveillance Team,” the Ministry of Health said Tuesday night. “Both test samples returned a negative result, as confirmed by the fully accredited National Reference Lab in New Providence. Health officials are satisfied that the passenger did not pose a risk to the other passengers traveling on the same aircraft.”

The statement came hours after the Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced it was investigating how the passenger was allowed on the flight.

A statement from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs says Dr Minnis has asked that this matter be treated with priority.

“Accordingly, the ministry is presently conducting enquiries into all matters surrounding the incident and will report its findings to the prime minister on completion,” the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said.

The Tribune previously reported that the man who flew to Grand Bahama on Friday despite testing positive for COVID-19 was one of four people from the same household who were not on Bahamasair’s initial list of people slated to join the government’s repatriation exercise.

Prior to boarding the flight, the other three people produced a negative COVID-19 test result, The Tribune understands. Consulate General officials from Florida reportedly told the airline the four were cleared for travel, sources said.

A foreign affairs official told a local daily on Monday that the man in question tested positive for COVID-19 “over a week ago”.

The policy is that only people with a negative COVID-19 test result could return to the country.

Comments

yari 4 months, 2 weeks ago

An elaborate cover up of this case. One plus three equals four and now everyone was negative and cleared to travel.

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ConchFretter 4 months, 2 weeks ago

Agreed. What about the other three household members? Are they still negative (as they were exposed to a Covid-19 positive person)?? They were not suppose to fly either.

If any of them (or the other 91 people on that plane) test positive now or in the near future, this saga will be far from over.

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moncurcool 4 months, 2 weeks ago

Speaking the same truth as Davis

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TigerB 4 months, 2 weeks ago

I was Our Lucaya Resort at the Lighthouse Point, where they all stayed yesterday. No one was there of those persons who came in or Friday, they were all sent home to quarantine, It is my guess he checked out negative from them....its weird.

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killemwitdakno 4 months, 2 weeks ago

So we can use them for locals now in a crisis. Not as shelter before Dorian?

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Dawes 4 months, 2 weeks ago

The Covid Status of the person does not matter. How they were allowed onto an international flight is the concern. Stop trying to sweep this under the rug, deal with those responsible.

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John 4 months, 2 weeks ago

Curiouser and curiouser. Seems like Dr Duane Sands resignation has to be rescinded or others must resign. Based on the information that this passenger DID test positive and was advised by a Dr not to fly.

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