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25 more deaths as surge powers on

By KHRISNA RUSSELL

Tribune Staff Reporter

krussell@tribunemedia.net

THE country’s top infectious diseases expert has warned The Bahamas needs “to get a handle” on a worsening COVID-19 situation, as officials confirmed 25 new COVID-19 deaths and 196 new cases over the past two days.

This means 52 COVID-19 deaths have been confirmed over a three-day period. Twenty-seven deaths — which took place between July 16 and August 23 — were reported on Monday.

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Dr Nikkiah Forbes

Yesterday, Dr Nikkiah Forbes, director of the National HIV/AIDS and Infectious Disease Programme at the Ministry of Health, said there will be more deaths as the virus surges in the country.

 “We’re still very much seeing an increase in the number of cases,” she said. “We still have a large number of cases every day and the healthcare system is under a tremendous amount of pressure because of that and all of the COVID care sites are extremely full and above capacity.

“At Princess Margaret Hospital we’re above capacity and it’s very challenging and that’s exactly the problem when you have a surge with a virus like COVID because if it’s spreading exponentially, spreading a lot, there is going to be a tremendous increase in the number of cases above the capacity that the healthcare system can manage.

 “So, that does get challenging because we know that we see an increase in the number of deaths when we are above the capacity of the health system to manage.

 “In addition, we have to be concerned about things like variant viruses where more people are hospitalised now with the Delta variant. A recent study came out in the last week that indicated that people who have the Delta variant, that more of them end up in the hospital and so it is challenging, and we really need to take all precautions to mitigate the surge.

 “Personal responsibility, following the public health precautions (and) getting vaccinated is what we need to do because we really do need to mitigate what’s happening.”

 Asked whether officials now had confirmation that the Delta variant was the predominant strain of the coronavirus infecting people, Dr Forbes said she was unsure if testing results had come back.

 However, she said given that Delta is the dominant strain around the world it was probably here in the country.

 “We do know that Delta variant is the predominantly circulating strain worldwide and, in our region, and we also know that COVID is easy to spread across borders and with variant strains it’s quite easily spread and so there is no reason to think that Delta wouldn’t be here, especially as we continue to see this uptick in cases.

 “It’s what you do. The public health measures help protect against the Delta variant too and the vaccines you do have some significant protection against it.”

 Dr Forbes said there is also concern about continued mutations of the coronavirus.

 The Lambda variant was first identified in Peru in August 2020 and according to the World Health Organisation cases with the variant have now been identified in 28 countries.

 Dr Forbes said: “There are other variants that are emerging. As a matter of fact, there was yet another variant identified yesterday (apart from Lambda).

 “Scientists are studying to see what that means. Is it going to be more infectious and if there will be any impact on vaccine coverage?

 “As long as COVID is spreading worldwide or anywhere the virus can change and mutant virus or variant viruses can cause things like strains, and it will become more contagious, and more people get sick.

 “So, we need to get a handle on this.”

 The new deaths mean there have now been 396 people lost to COVID-19.

 The deaths took place between July 16, 2021, and August 23, 2021.

 On July 16 and on July 30, three Grand Bahama women ages 52, 59 and 68 died.

On August 4, a 46-year-old New Providence woman lost her battle with the virus.

Three days later on August 7 a man, 48, and a 77-year-old woman died.

On August 8 a man from Grand Bahama died. He was 54-years-old.

On August 10 another woman from Grand Bahama died. She was 63.

And then on August 13 a 66-year-old woman’s life was claimed by the coronavirus.

August 18 saw two deaths – a 67-year-old man from New Providence and a man, 91, from Grand Bahama.

Four more deaths occurred involving Grand Bahamians. They were two women on August 20 ages 54 and 65 and women ages 78 and 36 on August 23.

Comments

FreeportFreddy 11 months, 2 weeks ago

PLEASE get vaccinated if you are not!!!

The government should immediately require Vaccinations for ALL tourists AND travel between islands...

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whogothere 11 months, 2 weeks ago

Israel now has more cases per capita than any where else on the planet and growing...they were the first to fully vaccinate their adult population...they have now given 26% of their population a third dose...looks like it's working out great..

And in other news a massive 350k RTC study in Bangladesh demonstrated that cloths masks made no difference at all to infection rates. Surgical masks made a slight difference to the 50+ population (but possible other dynamics may have impacted that out come) and made no difference in the under 50 portion of population...

In short the virus is going to virus...understanding seasonality and targeted protection for vulnerable members of the population is the only strategy that makes sense...

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ThisIsOurs 11 months, 2 weeks ago

The weird thing is, now that full vaccination has shown signs of losing effectiveness... in the vulnerable... the strategy has shifted to "protecting the vulnerable".

My belief is that this is the community we should have targeted from the start. Vaccinating everyone was a waste of time and resources. The effort should have been spent on clear definition of "vulnerable" then vaccinate them.

You could say the vaccine worked because all the healthy people didn't get sick but more than likely those persons would have remained healthy vaccinated or not. 95% of persons were either never sick or never sick enough to be hospitalized, thats a gigantic in your face data point.

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whogothere 11 months, 2 weeks ago

Correct thats why the English Data skewed so heavily to vaccinated deaths about 50 years plus - these peeps are likely sick and vulnerable as it is...Statistically speaking no one under the age of 50 has died of the delta variant - vaccinated or not... That is every reason to let kids get back to school, society get back to normal and as you suggest focus protection on those that need it. Obesity is a huge part of COVID equation but also politically sensitive...if people are going to claim to be guided by 'the science' they can't ignore the role of obesity in COVID mortality and hospitalisation..

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Economist 11 months, 2 weeks ago

now let's see. As of today Israel has about 88,200 cases for a population of 9,326,000. The US has 8,584,000 cases for a population of 334,000,000.

That means that the US population is 35 times larger than Israel. So 35 X 88,200 equals 3,087,000 so that means that the US has more than twice the number of cases at the moment.

So how do you get Israel having more than anyone else on the Planet?

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whogothere 11 months, 2 weeks ago

Honestly I d swear some people have never heard of google… sigh

Israel Daily new cases around 9.3k for a population 9 mill US Daily new cases around 160k for a pop of 350 mill

Or there a abouts...

Cumulative speaking in terms of total cases ever per pop Seychelles (80/90% vaxxed) takes home the gold and well Isreal still has the usa beat I believe....

1 million cases for a pop of 9 mill for Issy 39 million cases for a pop of 350 mill for US of A

https://ourworldindata.org/explorers/...">https://ourworldindata.org/explorers/...

https://ourworldindata.org/covid-case...">https://ourworldindata.org/covid-case...

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Economist 11 months, 2 weeks ago

Thanks, most helpful. I was looking at total current cases and not daily.

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