The following is a statement by the Ministry of Health:

As part of the national drive to safeguard the health of the Trinidad and Tobago population in the face of the global COVID-19 outbreak, the Ministry of Health continues to provide up-to-date information on the country’s status in this regard.

As of the afternoon of Tuesday, 17th March, 2020 the Ministry reports the following:

·         Number of samples submitted to the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) for testing for COVID-19 = 110

·         Number of samples which have tested positive = 5

The public is also advised that the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) has the only lab that is certified to test samples for COVID-19 and therefore, it is the only lab that can confirm positive or negative results of the samples.

The Ministry will continue to provide accurate information to the public in a timely fashion. The public is therefore urged to disregard and avoid sharing all unconfirmed, misleading and/or false information about COVID-19 (formerly Novel Coronavirus).

As part of the proactive approach to protecting the Trinidad and Tobago population from the threat of COVID-19, the Ministry of Health has taken the official decision to institute two parallel health care systems.

One public health system will focus on addressing confirmed cases of COVID-19.