The Ministry of Health has confirmed a fourth death from the COVID-19 virus. In a 10.30 pm bulletin, the ministry added that two more people have tested positive.

The following is a statement by the ministry:

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 night of Tuesday, 31st March, 2020 the Ministry reports the following:

 Number of samples submitted to the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) for testing for COVID-19 583
 Number of samples which have tested positive  89
 Number of deaths   4
 Number of persons discharged  1

The Ministry of Health provides the following update:

Two additional positive positive cases have been confirmed.

·         First case – person has no history of recent travel or contact with a positive case.

·         Second case – person had contact with persons who had a history of recent travel

One additional death has been confirmed – Elderly female with pre-existing medical condition.

Of the total number of positive cases, 49 of these positive cases came from the group of nationals who recently returned from a cruise:

·      46 positive cases from the group of 68 nationals who returned from the cruise together

·     3 positive cases from the group of nationals who returned from the same cruise separately from the other 68 nationals.

The Ministry of Health reminds the public that placing your hands on your face increases the risk of contracting the virus. The virus can transfer from your hands to your nose and mouth, and then enter your body.

Protect yourself by washing your hands often with soap and water or by using an alcohol-based sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol, if soap and water are not available.

The public is also strongly advised to take the following personal hygiene measures to protect themselves and their loved ones from COVID-19:

·           Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze

o   Dispose of tissue immediately after using

o   Cough and sneeze into the crook of your elbow if you do not have a tissue

·           Stay home if you are ill

·           Sanitize hard surfaces (e.g. table tops, handrails, doorknobs and trolleys) as often as possible.

·           Avoid close contact with people who have flu-like symptoms

·           Practise social distancing

o   Maintain at least 2 metres (approximately 6 feet) distance between yourself and others, especially anyone who is coughing or showing signs of flu-like illness.

It is also advised that all public transportation vehicles should operate with windows open and limit their occupancy.

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).