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JAMAICA | 98 New COVID-19 Cases, Gov't Could call off elections If.......

Featured Health Minister Dr. Chris Tufton says if the spike continues, the elections may have to be postponed. Health Minister Dr. Chris Tufton says if the spike continues, the elections may have to be postponed.
KINGSTON, August 20, 2020 - If Jamaica continue to record more corona virus cases at a rate which threatens the country’s ability to respond, the government says it could call off the General Election if the current spike in COVID-19 cases poses a threat to national security.

As the country moves to implement tighter restrictions to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, there are fears that the staging of a General Election at this time may not be the best decision for the country especially after overwhelming reports of non-compliance on the campaign trail.

At a press conference this evening, Health Minister Dr. Christopher Tufton said the government might be forced to postpone the elections: “The prime minister has made it clear, that in the interest of Jamaica and Jamaicans, if there is a need to pull back, we will do so, ultimately guided by what is in the best interest of the people of Jamaica,” said Tufton.

The health minister reported this evening that a 74-year-old man who tested positive for COVID-19 has died pushing the tally to 15 deaths.

In addition, there have been 98 new COVID cases. This is the highest number of new cases in one day.

Tufton said 10 of the cases are from backlog samples and 88 are recent.

Overall, the case count is now 1,290 with 416 active cases.

In the meantime, with the continued increase in the number of COVID-19 cases in St Thomas, the decision has been taken by the Ministry of Health and Wellness to put additional communities within the parish under quarantine.

The communities are Albion and Seaforth, which have seen 13 cases over the last three weeks, the ministry said this morning.

“Many of the cases are symptomatic, which is a cause for concern, and suggests that there may be ongoing transmission in the communities,” the ministry added.

"Community surveillance will be carried out over the next two weeks to detect early any new cases, and to implement appropriate measures to contain spread within the parish."

The quarantine period, which began at 5:00 am today, will run for 14 days, ending September 2.

The other communities in the parish now under quarantine, namely Bamboo River, Church Corner and Lower Summit, will remain under quarantine, also until September 2.

“Based on test results received, the ministry can now report that some 107 people have been identified as being positive for COVID-19 in the parish. Forty-five of that number are within the quarantine areas,” the ministry said.


  • Countries: Jamaica
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