Statement on Grand Bahama – Lockdown Extension

Minister of State for Grand Bahama
Senator the Hon. Kwasi Thompson - Thursday, 6 August 2020
Good afternoon.
I am announcing today on behalf of the Prime Minister, the Most Honourable Dr. Huber Minnis, that after consultation with health and other officials, the lockdown implemented for Grand Bahama from the 23rd of July to the 7th of August will be extended to Wednesday the 19th of August at 5am.
This decision has been taken in order to continue to slow and control the community spread of the COVID-19 virus on Grand Bahama.
As of Wednesday the 5th of August, health officials have confirmed 336 confirmed cases of COVID-19 on the island.
Health officials recommend that cleaning with a regular household disinfectant reduces the risk of spreading COVID-19.
The extension of the lockdown is necessary in order to save and protect the lives of the residents of Grand Bahama.
To be clear, the National Lockdown Order that took effect for the entire country on Tuesday evening, will continue to apply to Grand Bahama through the end of this extended lockdown period.
As a reminder, on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 7am to 5pm the following will be allowed to operate for the general public:
• Grocery stores
• Gas stations for external services only
• Pharmacies for curbside services only
• Water depots
• Bakeries for curbside and delivery
• Water and ice production companies for curbside and delivery services only; and
• Hardware stores for curbside and delivery
On Saturdays, grocery stores, pharmacies for curbside, gas stations for external services and water depots are permitted to open from 7am to 1pm for essential workers only.
The Grand Bahama Food Task Force will continue to provide food for those residents in need during the extended lockdown. To date, we have distributed 5,366 vouchers assisting thousands of Grand Bahamians. Today, we have distributed 1,202 vouchers to Grand Bahamians.
Commercial banks are also allowed to provide client-facing services on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 9am to 1pm.
For the complete list of exempted businesses and services you can access the Emergency (Covid 19 Pandemic) (Lockdown) Order, 2020 on opm.gov.bs. Information is also available on our Facebook and Instagram social media platforms.
WhatsApp 727-2473
Help Desk 727-8119
727-0993
727-0837
727-0826
Or email opmgbinfocenter@bahamas.gov.bs
I want to urge the residents of Grand Bahama and across the entire Bahamas to follow the guidelines that have been put in place for their protection and the protection of their family members and loved ones.
Residents should not leave their homes unless it is absolutely necessary. Please stay at home!
The lockdown measures will be strictly enforced in order to save lives and to protect the general health of the residents of Grand Bahama.
An extension of the lockdown is not something that would have been preferred, but it is absolutely necessary.
We must work together to stop the spread of the virus on Grand Bahama.
I thank the residents of Grand Bahama in advance for their cooperation.
I would now like to invite Dr. Frank Bartlett, Coordinator for the Grand Bahama Heath Services COVID 19 Task Force to provide an update on COVID-19 on Grand Bahama.
Press Statement
Dr. Frank Bartlett
Coordinator Grand Bahama Health Services COVID 19 Task Force
August 6, 2020
As of August 5, 2020, Grand Bahama has recorded 336 positive Covid-19 cases, the death count officially stands at 5. There are presently 5 positive cases hospitalized and approximately over 900 persons in quarantine and 310 persons in isolation. A total of 1,038 swabs have been done to date.
Public health measures and social distancing measures along with lockdowns have proven to be effective. Ideally, an evaluation of the impact of the restrictions is made after the completion of one incubation period or 14 days. Based on the changes in clinical indicators hospitalization rate, ICU admissions, numbers of positive cases, a determination is made as to whether other measures are required to curtail the increase in positive covid cases
The current assessment reveals that:
1. A downward trend has not been established
2. There is still not strict compliance with the public health and social distancing measures in place
3. Daily, patients are accessing the healthcare system complaining of symptoms compatible with Covid.
4. Challenges with a response to increased hospitalizations impacted by:
a. Hospitalizations for Covid suspects are surpassing non-covid patients
b. ICU bed capacity at 100% for the past month with non-covid patients; if we were to
see an increase in sicker/ critical patients the healthcare system will be
overwhelmed.
c. Human resource challenges manning multiple sites.
d. Patients in the second wave are remaining hospitalized for longer periods
compared to the first wave.
As such, The health team has recommended an extension of the lockdown restrictions in place.