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Breaking News: Jamaica Records 1st Coronavirus Case – March 10 2020

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good afternoon I'm Herman green with the midday news a special welcome to those of you watching online at one spot Mediacom we begin with news that the Ministry of Health has called an emergency press conference to make an announcement on the cove it 19 coronavirus noir reporter shamela pullin is there and we are work grant joined in her life to hear what's happening at the press conference Tamela Thank You Herman the Minister of Health called an emergency press briefing we're here on standby the health technocrats are not here as yet to make that big announcement that we're here waiting for but until then it's back to your hormones all right thank you shemitah so the Ministry of Health has called that press conference it's training for twelve o'clock so we're waiting for the minister to take a seat and make his announcement in the meanwhile the Health Ministry is seeking to assure Jamaicans that the man who ran away from a quarantine facility in st Andrew Monday evening is not a threat to society speaking at a media briefing this morning Health Minister dr

Christopher Tufton said the 27 year old man who is from a st Mary address has not been exhibiting symptoms of the novel coronavirus cove 819 he was held in the Waffen Park area sometime after 2 o'clock this morning during an operation by the police and the Ministry of Health however the incident raises questions for security to be beefed up at these quarantine facilities there'd be a technical assessment done to determine who the person was in contact with my understanding is that a person went and visited a female friend or companion and that was the sort of extent of their contact obviously in transit to the location one enough to examine the it's important also to know that a person did not display any symptoms they're in observation and they still have not so there is no need to be too alarmed unless something happens beyond that and remember know the virus spreads when persons are displaying symptoms now doctor Tufton said the man reached the law and could be charged based on the quarantine act and the Ministry of Health says to date 243 travelers who have been seen as persons of interest landed at the country's international airport's chief medical officer dr Jacqueline Bisset sir McKenzie says 63 of those individuals have been refused entry 23 placed in quarantine and 9 in isolation dr B says the Mackenzie says the latest person who has been placed in isolation took place yesterday 8 persons that had come in Street from the airport's or from community who went straight to the emergency department of the hospital if they went come him in from the community or straight from the airports to isolation and those 8 persons were tested negative so we have one additional person yesterday who presented as an emergency department of one of our hospitals and has now been isolated the samples have been taken off and the tests are being done and we expect that today we will get back those results just a reminder that we are still understand but we're waiting for the emergency press conference called by the Ministry of Health for an announcement on the kovat 19 coronavirus as soon as the minister is ready we will be joining him live in the United States the Grand Princess cruise ship on Monday docked in Oakland California at least 21 of its crew members and passengers are infected with an avocado virus we have more from the CNN barred from port for five days at least twenty-one coronavirus cases on board the Grand Princess finally pulls in first of all there are some children there who are compromised they want to get them off every passenger will be screened then treated or quarantined at military bases in California and beyond we may have to stay on the ship for a few more days it's gonna be quite a lengthy process meanwhile Florida a sister ship the Caribbean princess now under a no sail order because two crew members were previously on ships with a positive case up in Washington state where 19 have died at this nursing home and beyond echoes of a nationwide concern that a lack of early testing hurt containment debbie de los ángeles mother died says they're still waiting on her test result they said well tests were sure there was a shortage the nursing home says all remaining residents have now been tested colleges and school districts in Washington state California and New York among others closing classrooms the Empire State now taking the initiative using prisoners to manufacture up to a hundred thousand gallons of hand sanitizer a week because you can't get it on the market and when you get it it's very very expensive last Monday morning there were 89 confirmed cases in this country today we topped 600 meanwhile the World Health Organization says there are numerous lessons that the world must learn from China in the treatment of the corona virus this analysis from the w-h-o as China has reported drastic reductions in the number of infections from over 2000 cases per day to know just over 100 cases per day the big lessons first of all that we learn from China you don't learn in Wuhan in in Luhan you learn what can go wrong if you let this virus run and for China at that early stage remember new virus never seen before it didn't have a diagnostic didn't know what would happen we didn't know how to control it so this is what happens but what we've learned from the other areas of China there's 31 provinces all of them got infected none of them had the experience of Wuhan because he acted differently and first they went fast speed meant so much secondly to get that speed they mobilized the whole population the the population the people became their surveillance system to help find this disease prevent the disease but when it did occur rapidly get isolated so that they didn't spread it to others and that was because the population knew what the problem was and they were a big part of the solution that is the big big lesson you cannot do this by government you cannot do it by the health authorities alone you need it all working in sync that's the critical piece and just a reminder that the Ministry of Health has called an emergency press conference and we're standing by to hear from the ministry I will show you for 12 o clock but the Minister has not taken the seat as yet to address us so we're still waiting to hear from him on that we don't take a break here on the midday news but please stay with us we have more news when we return welcome back and thanks for staying with us and we continue as we are awaiting the press conference from the Ministry of Health where the Minister is supposed to should be having an emergency press conference on the cove 819 you're now seeing images from the location where we expect the minister to take a seat any minute now to give us that update we're standing by for that press conference a reporter shamela pullin is there and she's on standby to give us the latest on whatever is announced or whatever is presented at that press conference in the meantime a top-level meeting is scheduled for today at tourism as tourism interests grapple with the imminent threat of kovat 19 this comes as the United States issued a travel warning telling citizens not to go on a cruise Jamaica's tourism minister Edmund Bartlet is insisting that the negative impact of kovat 19 can be minimized if stakeholders adhere to protocols and your Chisolm spoke with him yesterday uncertainty and fear gripped crew and passengers on the Grand Princess cruise ship as new surfaced that a man on the ship contracted Cove in 19 and later died over 20 people who were on the ship tested positive for the virus that contributed to the US State Department urging citizens especially those with underlying health conditions not to go on a cruise out of an abundance of caution Jamaica has denied entry to at least two cruise ships as Kovac 19 fears intensify so why not a complete ban I think you ban if you can't manage and if everybody is committed to doing their part to make sure that the protocols are observed the tourism minister indicated that cruise lines are further scrutinizing passengers checking medical and travel history before allowing them to go cruising and so that sector along with other stakeholders including hotels and attractions will attend a high-level meeting on Tuesday do a situation analysis that the director of tourism will provide and then we would have a discussion with the sector's making first of all their input as they see it as it is affecting their element of the sector and then afterwards we have a general discussion and then we look at the way forward Edmund Bartlett adds that the tourism product development company TPD Co will be working closely with officials from the Health Ministry TPD Co is going to spearhead that whole area of dealing with the protocols and making sure that the education that is required in the hotels and the attractions everywhere will be ensuring that posters are everywhere that information about how to do whatever and also that physical facilities are in the hotels and the places of attraction so that people can wash their hands people could wipe their hands and so on three things will be guiding decisions scientific evidence facts and wise leadership we think and we still holding that at the end of the year we could come out at about a percent up and 15 or 2% up in earnings so basically then Jamaica is not projecting a loss over last year what we are projecting is a reduction in the rate of growth over lasted meanwhile Jamaica has banned travel from five countries which have recorded thousands of kovat 19 infections Iran China South Korea Singapore and Italy in the u

s over 30 of the 50 states have confirmed cases are we contemplating a ban on the United States as well that's a question in all fairness that has to be answered at another place we we are focused heavily on how do we ensure that along with health only the right people come to Jamaica and that we are not exposed at all Andrea Chisholm tbj news in the meantime there's a call from the World Health Organization for governments to ensure the protection of health workers as countries spring into action to contain the spread of koban 19 the pronouncement was made yesterday at the w-h-o press conference as at March 9 more than 100 countries had recorded cases of the corona virus a breakdown from the World Health Organization points to more than 100,000 cases while the global death toll has also risen to more than 3000 the w-h-o is still not calling it a pandemic but says it's close we're reaching that point and when you reach 100 countries and when you reach 100,000 cases it is time to step back and think too of two weeks ago there was 30 or 40 countries so now it's 100 countries and that's not a quantitative measure but it is a qualitative measure of what direction we're going in the w-h-o however remains optimistic that the virus can be contained it would be the first pandemic in history that could be controlled the bottom line is we are not at the mercy of the virus the great advantage we have is that the decisions we all make as governments businesses communities families and individuals can influence the trajectory of this epidemic scientists are still scrambling to learn as much as they can about the virus additionally the w-h-o says it's taking a comprehensive look at who is at high risk for death this is not data as of today but data from from earlier that mortality among people who are over 80 is highest amongst the age group in the end the mortality is above 20% there are there is higher mortality for people who have underlying conditions for example for those with cardiovascular disease around 13% for those who have diabetes around 9% for those with chronic respiratory disease around 8% and for those with cancer around seven and a half now these numbers you know are based on a subset of the total cases that have been reported to date meanwhile the whu-oh of use as critical the need for adequate medical care for health workers who will be dealing with kovat 19 infected patients the very minimum we can give those frontline workers is the PPE and the training and the management arrangements so we can manage their stress and their fatigue and I think most countries are moving to do that and that's why we spoke earlier about this issue of requisitioning of PPE the real tragedy I think in the coming days and weeks will be the moral hazard and the dilemma that health workers may face if they've got covered 19 patients in front of them who need help and they don't have the protective equipment to protect themselves would you like to be that health worker would you like to be a doctor or a nurse having to treat a patient knowing full well that you are not protected that's an awful dilemma that no health worker no health worker in the world should have to face and just a reminder that we are understand by where we come to join the Ministry of Health for an emergency press conference for an announcement on Kovan 19 coronavirus the minister is supposed to address the conference it was sailing for 12 o clock and we are waiting for him to get to the venue to speak to us on that update in the meantime asked over 19 continues to affect several sectors head coach of the sprint Tech Track Club Maurice Wilson says he believes there is a strong possibility the Olympic Games won't be held because of the threat of kovat 19 but Wilson says he is still preparing his athletes as normal despite those concerns Jordan Ford has the details the spread of kovat 19 has affected a number of sporting events thus far and has been raising questions over the staging of this summer's Olympics in Tokyo Japan but while saying he thinks there is a 65% chance the games won't be held Jamaica and sprint tech track and field head coach Maurice Wilson says he is still preparing his athletes with a July start date in mind as I've know we are preparing if Olympics is in July because we do have obligations that we must meet but there has also been talk of possibly shifting the date of the Olympics with it being said that they have until as late as December to have the games if the Olympics is in December it's definitely going to have an effect on most of the athletes who have been training because remember would have been coming out to a season where the World Championships was in October and so far for the interim we will continue to train as we are maintaining await the information if it goes to December then we will have to know take a break look at what is in front of us and recalibrate caliber we would have to come again then put it that way in terms of our preparations Chuck and fields a premier seasonal event the Diamond League is set to get going in just over a month's time and will feature meets in China and Italy countries which have been grappling with the widespread outbreak of the virus Wilson was also asked about the possibility of a financial hit that his club could take if athletes aren't able to travel to compete in the various Diamond League mates I really don't even want to think about that because I would have said earlier we were preparing athletes for for the World Indoor Championships this is the first year we have made significant investment in terms of sending athletes are brought to get the qualifying time to run had Merlin do it and Merlin doors have been cancelled and so the last is would have started from January but what if his athletes were to decide on their own that they would take the risk to travel for the Diamond League meets well athletes are there are individuals they are not in my kids are not contracted to any organization that determines what they do so it is an individual choice what I will say though am I'm more sure that in terms of staffing I cannot guarantee that any of the sprint X Taff would be support in such a venture this summer's Olympics is set to run from July 24 to almost 9:00 in Tokyo Japan and just a reminder that we are awaiting a emergency press conference at the Ministry of Health where Health Minister Otto Christopher Thornton and his team is expected to give an update on the covent 19 virus we go on to other news a major explosion at the tower restaurant are not for Boulevard in New Kingston brought business the business district to a standstill this morning at News time emergency crews were still at the location TVJ News understands that about minutes to 11:00 a loud explosion was heard then fire and smoke were seen coming from the building it's believed that a gas leak from the restaurant cylinders caused the catastrophe at least one motor vehicle which was parked in front of the building was destroyed there are no reports of injuries and we now go back to reports on the corona virus as the Public Health System is bracing to deal with thousands of additional sick people should Cove it 19 which Jamaica 2 billion dollars has been set aside to both of the system in the meantime an aggressive sensitization program on proper hygiene is to be rolled out more from Duane Anderson I near 2 billion dollar response plan is in place should Cove in 19 reach Jamaica and a large chunk of that money will be spent in the health sector due to the strain it could come under Health Minister dr Christopher Tufton said an assessment has been done and health facilities could be asked to respond to tens of thousands of additional persons seeking health care some 800,000 will seek medical care in public and private facilities at the height of the outbreak we could see as much as 35,000 or so people seeking care within a given week close to 50% of the more than 800,000 persons we expect access care and our public health facilities at the height of the outbreak we could see approximately 16,000 persons in a week further just about 2,000 of the cases visiting public health facilities we anticipate will experience severe acute respiratory infection requiring hospice here and of this number some 360 will require critical gear but that's all if so while the virus is not in Jamaica the authorties will try to keep it out so far travel restrictions have been imposed on five countries Singapore China South Korea Italy and Iran the minister insists the authorities will be unconscious as the need arises phones will also be spent to sense it as the public about the importance of proper hygiene the success of our efforts is contingent on the support of all Jamaicans including the deliberate efforts to access and share accurate information on the virus thus helping to minimize the fears and anxiety that has been associated with the spread of the kovat 19 at the same time we must in keeping with good hygiene maintain a distance of at least 2 metres from persons who are coughing or sneezing frequently perform hand hygiene by washing hands thoroughly with soap and water or using a hand sanitizer if hands are not visibly soiled cover our mouths and noses when coughing or sneezing with a tissue and then discarding it and avoid touching our faces and each other unnecessarily the kovat 19 response plan received the approval of Prime Minister Andrew Holness following a meeting with the National Disaster Risk Management Council last week doing an Anderson TVJ news and we remind you once again that we are standing by to hear from the Ministry of Health they are holding a emergency an emergency press conference on kovat 19 or expecting the minister to address the audience there and will be carrying it alive so to address the public also our viewers as soon as possible so our reports are similar put in she's also there she will be giving us an update details on whatever is unknowns whatever is presented at that emergency press conference in the meantime a controversial research paper is claiming that kovat 19 has split into two distinct strains and that it is possible for persons to be infected with both the research was done through a joint study virus virgins from multiple Chinese universities Andrew lately has the details scientists in China studying the outbreak of the novel coronavirus say they have discovered two main strains of the virus affecting humans the researchers cautioned that their study looked only at a limited range of data and said fallout studies are larger data sets were needed to better understand that the viruses evolution the preliminary study found that a more aggressive strain of the novel coronavirus associated with the outbreak in Wuhan accounted for about 70% of analyzed cases while 30% were linked to a less aggressive type they say the prevalence of the more aggressive virus decreased after early January suspicions heightened when this Australian couple Karen and Jason honey both tested positive for the virus but exhibited completely different symptoms Karen's illness began with a few eggs progressing to coughing and a high fever but curiously jason has no symptoms despite testing positive the novel coronavirus like all other viruses mutates or undergo small changes in its genome but not every expert is convinced a more aggressive strain exists other experts argue the two types the Chinese researchers claimed to have identified were a result of both normal viral mutation and errors in data that they were relying on in the meantime the researchers are warning that the effects of kovat 19 on the human body is like a combination of SARS and AIDS as it damages both the lungs and immune systems the World Health Organization says some people who contracted the virus will show symptoms others will not and 80% will recover without needing special treatment and relatedly TVJ news and just in case you're wondering why we have this many covered 19 stories in the midday newscast we are on standby we're waiting for the Health Ministry they're having an emergency press conference on kovat 19 and unknown when tangkuban 19 virus we spoke to the Minister of Health dr Christopher toughened that's a short while ago he said he will be big big he would be starting that press conference within another three or so minutes so we will be carrying that live you can stay tuned to get all the details from that press conference as soon as he begins no just just a bit of background here we this morning we got this from the Ministry of Health a press release that says the Ministry of Health and Wellness is currently monitoring a patient in isolation the person of interest presented at hospital on Monday March 9 with some respiratory symptoms and checks revealed that the patients travel history included travel to a country that has confirmed cases of kovat 19 so we are not clear on what the announcement will be but we are standing by to hear from the minister what is this emergency announcement on the Kovach 19 coronavirus and meanwhile the World Health Organization says there are numerous lessons that the world must learn from China in the treatment of the corona virus no this is and this analysis is from the w-h-o as China has reported drastic reductions in the number of infections from over 2000 cases per day to no 100 per day the big lessons first of all that we learn from China you don't learn in Wuhan in in Luhan you learn what can go wrong if you let this virus run and for China at that early stage remember new virus never seen before it didn't have a diagnostic didn't know what would happen we didn't know how to control it so this is what happens but what we've learned from the other areas of China there's 31 provinces all of them got infected none of them had the experience of Wuhan because he acted differently and first they went fast speed meant so much secondly to get that speed they mobilized the whole population the the population the people became their surveillance system to help find this disease prevent the disease but when it did occur rapidly get isolated so that they didn't spread it to others and that was because the population knew what the problem was and they were a big part of the solution that is the big big lesson you cannot do this by government and I do by the health authorities alone you need it all working in sync that's the critical piece now a top-level meeting is scheduled for today as tourism interests grapple with the imminent threat of kovat 19 this comes as the United States issued a travel warning telling citizens not to go on a cruise and with the hole in that story as we understand that the minister is now ready for that press conference as you can see images live from the Ministry of Health Health Minister dr Christopher Toffler now taking the seat to address the country to address the audience on kovat 19 our reporter shamela pullin is present she'll be there to give us a report on whatever information is presented whatever details we can get from that press conference okay okay good afternoon everyone let me just apologize for the delay in in starting all right so let me welcome all of you and I'm gonna read from a statement at which point we can deal with any questions that may flow from that so thank you for joining this us this afternoon for what is an important development with the corona virus disease 2019 or kovat 19 that is it as it is referred to Jamaica today confirmed its first imported case of corona virus disease 2019 over 2019 here in Kingston the patient is a Jamaican female what travelled from the United Kingdom which as you know has a que as cases of kovat 19 she arrived in the island on March 4th presented to the public health system on March 9th and has been in isolation since then based on the patient's travel history and symptoms health professionals suspected Kobe 19 when she presented herself a clinical sample was collected and sent to the national influenza Center where lab tests confirmed the diagnosis today at approximately 11:00 a

m the patient and family members have been informed of the development the patient's infection was travel-related based on the assessment however steps are being taken to prevent the risk of community spread these measures include the dispatch of a health team to the home of the patient for assessment and initiation of public health measures the identification and contact tracing for all possible exposed persons meeting of ministry officials with members of staff at the hospital unnecessary interventions that are required to be put in place in addition in addition imposed travel restrictions remain in place in fact three countries have been added to the list of the five that were originally announced China Italy South Korea Singapore and Iran are the original countries that was previously made public we have added to that Spain France and Germany the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and foreign trade and I met this morning with the ambassador's of those countries as well as the EU ambassador and I've informed them that based on the risk assessment of communities spread of the virus in those countries that travel restrictions would be imposed further in as part of the overall strategy that was may put in effect some time ago I'd like to advise the public to continue to observe and perhaps strengthen their sensitivities to public gatherings which we are discouraging non-essential travel we continue to patrol irregular border crossings sensitization of key personnel at all air and seaports will continue we have designated for quarantine facilities and others will be identified and those are being used or being prepared to be used and we are finalizing the retrofitting of isolation facilities in each of the islands public hospitals on the readiness of the islands health system the ministry has developed the local capacity to test for the virus which we did which has led to the confirmation of this particular case thanks to training support and material support from the Pan American Health Organization assess the readiness of our health facilities to meet the anticipated increase in demand on services continue to address existing gaps including with respect of additional supplies or equipment through at the present time we have enough personal protective equipment in the island for health facilities we also have adequate stores of respite or medicine for the next three months with additional supplies on demand and we continue of course to train our public health care givers India in the event that they are required to support persons who are so affected these efforts are supported of course by a communications campaign to keep each member of the population updated on the virus and its impact and with oversight that is being provided by the Honorable Prime Minister and rule has led National Disaster Risk Management Council and I've had a conversation with the Honorable Prime Minister when we learned of this development and I know he has been in contact with the leader of the Opposition informing him of of these this latest development so we're taking all of rule of society approach with our national leaders fully informed I have also named who vide 19 response advisory team that will support the ministry of health and wellness in our planning and coordination with respect of the to this public health challenge so this team will work with us within the ministry of health and wellness of course we report to the National Disaster Response Committee which is a much more broader team multi-stakeholder multi-agency team the members of this advisory team for the ministry of health and wellness are mr Howard Mitchell former president of the private sector organization of Meiko mr Christopher Zeca who is currently president of the of Sajha Corps CEO of such a core mr Owen Ellington former Commissioner of Police Reverend Devon dick Jamaica Baptists Union dr

marina rank 'soon deputy Associate Dean Faculty of Social Sciences at UWA commander Wen's Gorman and Lieutenant Colonel Sidney Powell of the JTF and ACP Calvin Allen of the jcf the ministry is also urging the public to adhere to infection prevention and control measures as a standard operating procedure in fact it is more important now than ever which includes maintaining a distance of at least one meter from persons were coughing or sneezing frequently perform hand hygiene by washing hands thoroughly with soap and water or using a hand sanitizer hands are not visibly soiled of our mouths and noses with that tissue when coughing or sneezing and then discarding it and resist a habit to touch our faces for additional information we encourage the public to visit our website the ministry of health and wellness or contact the number it-it-it one love that's it eat it six six three five six eight three I would like to use the opportunity to appeal to the public to remain calm in the face of this most recent development and to implement all the advisories related to personal hygiene social distancing and overall infection prevention control I'd like to reassure the public that the government of Jamaica the Ministry of Health and Wellness is doing all that is necessary to keep the public informed to establish the necessary infrastructure to confront this particular issue and frankly speaking we anticipated from some time ago that this day it was a strong possibility that this day would come given the pace of the spread of this virus globally and the internal spread and the fact that as a society we're part of the global community with relatively open borders so we have been preparing in the event of today and we have no just triggered the next phase of the response which because of an imported case would include as a priority containment of the particular case was to prevent the community transmission which would be another phase but we still feel that the country needs to be informed be alert and to take the necessary precautions as an absolute preventative measure the other point I'd like to say is that we are doing what is necessary to trace persons who have come in contact with this particular individual and we have already made contact with individuals family members we have already established a protocol if you will they be confined to a particular space to their homes and further assessment of that situation is ongoing as we speak and again that is in keeping with the protocol of containment once a case would have been identified and in this case an imported case so I will end here and entertain questions what I'm gonna ask the representative from the University Hospital of the West Indies to take a seat are they're here No ok all right they're on their way because I suspect you may want some questions as it relates to the institution the chief medical officer is here and of course the permanent secretary so we will entertain questions known right so what I'm saying is that based on our assessment of inventory I have been advised that we have enough medicines for patients who have respiratory related ailments which is associated with this disease and could provide those supplies up to the next three months I'm also told by the nhf that additional supplies are on order and therefore we would expect a Bal study inventory as needed during that period of time during that period of time yes I am I am relying on the information from the National Health Fund and the team there and they would have done their sort of surveys with suppliers throughout the country and beyond because they did with overseas suppliers also and they have said to me that they have strong relationships and would therefore ideal for confident that they would be able to replenish supplies as needed okay so decisions are going to have to be made in the not-too-distant future as it relates to these public gatherings I know that cabinet took a decision last evening for the minister of education to advise as it relates to the Penn Relays and schools by now should have been advised that the government is taking a position to not participate at the Penn Relays this year because that travel and the location could involve levels of risks that we would like to discourage and so we are but I'm saying it no publicly but we were going to actually put an advisory robes against that trouble as it relates the boys and girls jumps there is a meeting scheduled between the organizers the minister of sports and the Minister of Education and myself and the main sponsor I think grace Kennedy of course is the main sponsor where a decision will be taken and that decision should be taken within 24 hours but needless to say the fact that we know of a case nevertheless and imported case it does raise the elevates the concerns as it relates to public gatherings and that could be applied to all major public gatherings for the time being no I mean the the country from where the person traveled the UK I think this person enjoys dual citizenship there are Jamaican but with a UK citizenship and I don't want to go into too much details about the individual but the person troubled they would have been screened as all passengers would be at the airport but they were not on the list of countries that would have been quarantined remember we had some specific countries based on the internal spread the UK even though it has the virus and it is getting worse would not have represented one of those high risk at the time what having so the person would have been screened in a normal course of activities at the port of entry but having arrived one of the things that we tell persons who come in is that they must also self assess and they are given documentation to that effect and I think the person did not based on what investigations suggest have symptoms until later days after arriving and having had those symptoms they went to see their doctor which led to all the other things that have transpired there there are no guarantees as it relates to our absolutes as it relates to the spread of this Paris and I think we have said that there are no the only absolute from preventing an imported case is to shut Jamaica off from the rest of the world and the Eva so under the legal framework you can't Jamaica from Jamaica's who are all over the world and want to come back home what you do is quarantine them so the reality is as the virus spreads it it it it increases the possibilities and the exposure which is why we said in the early stages of public education and information that a key part of the strategy strategy was the delay to allow us time to plan for the eventualities or the possibility of it coming in other words restricting where the risk was greatest while preparing our internal infrastructure personnel training sensitization so that the more the risk increases globally is the more likely it will remain all the viruses in about 112 countries the last 60 countries are so over the last three weeks so it's it's really moving at a very rapid rate we are like this 650 for six Caribbean island to have the virus so we have been able to delay to a certain point and what is very important for us in this phase is to contain to probe to prevent community spread hence the measures that are being taken I don't have the CMO wants to comment further on that yes all right let me get the let me ask the same or to respond we would want to reiterate that our basic premise is that persons who do not have symptoms are not transmitting the virus okay that is what we have based our interventions on this person became symptomatic while in the island so at the time that a person was in the airplane the person did not report any symptoms okay okay so our main interest and big focus at this point is going to be enabling resources to do the contact tracing so we would be looking at the transportation that brought the person in the home situation we will be tracking where and where this person has been what kind of events they have attended to and that will give us an assessment of what kind of risk is the risk confined to one home is there is confined to a community is it confined to several communities and we would have to put in measures based on that once we have we have gotten the the immediate contacts of those persons we will be looking at quarantine for those persons depending on how many persons are involved in terms of our investigations then we will be looking to self quarantine and of course at this time we would want all our primary care facilities public and private to be on alert because they must get a travel history contact history from persons that are coming in with any kind of influenza like illness or flu-like illness and it cause respiratory symptoms so I think that is where or am has to be for every body to be sensitized to what is happening we have more a more increased level of awareness so that they can report to the public health authorities that we can do the necessary investigations and containment as necessary yes I certainly can the question is today and and and one of the challenge is let me just say I mean nothing nothing is a secret in Jamaica's you know and I prefer I say it rather than others start to speculate what I want to say before I say the parish that we really ought to I mean urging the public to as difficult as it is to exercise some control over the propensity to to to to seek out to further inquire or worse to be overly assertive in whatever way shape or form our own unaffected individual or affected home environment and I'm saying it for reasons that I think I need to say it I don't want persons to be intimidated or abused in any way shape or form because they are unfortunate to have had the virus however they would have picked it up not to mention other persons who are not affected but who are from a similar home or family environment and I think it's very important that I ask the public to exercise some care as it relates to this we're all in this thing together and and no matter how much we try we're not going to eliminate through aggression or otherwise the existence or the threat that is represented here with this virus it really is through a coordinated attempt no I know I'm long-winded in giving a simple response but nevertheless I understand and for the unfortunate elements of our culture and I think it's important to say for the record what the person is is in on the board of st Thomas and st Thomas and st

Angela stays in the body you mean in terms of how long the person's infectious okay so that's two different things all right so the person is infectious as we know and let us understand that new information is happening every day okay and so we get more and more information and we will update as we get the information but as it is known the virus is can be passed on to persons when the pertly the patient has symptoms so once the patient stops having symptoms then what we tend to do is we tend to do to repeated tests okay over a period of 48 to 2 to 4 days to see if there is virus still present and based on that then we'll be see that received a discharge the person however as I said we have information is changing new information and we will update as as needed right now the patient is stable okay and and we have mild symptoms I would add some dr Bruce if he wants to to expand on that no the patient has cm who said is stable and will continue to observe the patient okay let's fix it up a little is there anybody undecided once a sequestered no all right I'll come back to this side the Ministry and the hospital has been used in the time since January to prepare our team has an operational plan and as of yesterday they executed that plan you know in responding to that question I'm responding also to the question about cases coming in from all the different countries because we have to recognize that Jamaica know falls into the category of one of those countries that has one imported case an imported case for every country means that they are going to isolate that case they are going to do the necessary contact tracing and they are going to try to contain that to a specific area and try to narrow that don't dealing okay so it does not mean that the entire country is contaminated alright so right now we have one imported case that has been isolated the Public Health Team is a strong team that is going to be out there doing the contact investigations we have started to do that already we have started to look at the circle of persons we are ensuring that those persons stay on the controlled situations that we can monitor effectively I wanna raise another issue which i think is important at some point in time the country will have to engage in a conversation and we will have to initiate that conversation around the dissecting the data the numbers of persons who are affected if this becomes if eventually we have community spread the reality is that the virus does not symbolize a death sentence for those who are so infected that's very important in fact the numbers that we placed in the public domain through a public broadcast I made a few days ago indicated that the vast majority of Jamaicans who may can't be contaminated with the virus will recover and and it also outlines very clearly who the vulnerable groups are all the persons with underlining conditions compromised immune systems and so on so while it is our intention and we encourage cooperation from the public in this regard to keep the virus out of Jamaica or to contain it when it is discovered we do not want persons to engage in panic because they interpret the virus to mean the most extreme result because that is certainly not the history of the virus in other countries and we do not we certainly know it won't be the case here we just have to deal with it and that's what we are doing what I announced in my presentation that we are imposing on three additional countries for now for now those are the three Spain Germany and France a body assessment is an ongoing assessment well I will only say what I said in the statement that we certainly discourage non-essential travel as an important part of this so if your cruise is absolutely essential then it wouldn't fall in that category but if it if it's not then one would have to be advised and the same would apply for air travel also by the way all right so yes the patient did leave the facility where he was under quarantine conditions he was subsequently retrieved and placed back in the facility the there there has been a discussion with the Constabulary around security arrangements at these facilities at a conversation with our a conversation with the police commissioner and we are in dialogue around what needs to be done additionally because we do get support to ensure that this does not happen again the person who left the facility did so not just against the will of the healthfirst healthcare professionals but also in contravention of the law and so proceedings will be levied against the person they'll be charged because we have to discourage this kind of activity our responsibility as a government and as a ministry is to protect the well-being of the society and if persons knowingly puts the rest of us in a compromising position then the law has a response for that so that will that will take its course but while we're doing that we're going to ensure that we beef up this arrangement it's important though to add as I believe the clinicians can come in and support that the person was in quarantined for observation but the person was not displaying symptoms we quarantine facilities is as a result of the person coming from a country of interest a Jamaican coming from one of those five countries we place them under 14 their quarantine arrangement even there in though they display good health and because that's the period of time that the virus would take to show symptoms and then we release them and we have done that to a number of Jamaicans both in their home setting and at the government institutions so the fact that a person went out doesn't necessarily symbolize a threat but there's our possibility so what we're doing now is observing and the reality is that if the person is unfortunate to demonstrate symptoms then we have to know engage another phase which is the tracing of where the person went who they were in contact with and then those persons will be brought into the net so let's hope that doesn't occur but nevertheless an activity that we have to discourage because it does place all of us with a greater burden and at risk I have to leave that to the investigators I can tell you that right often I didn't do it I don't I'm a novice lawyer so I would venture to give you a response we stated age young person it's it's a young a young adult we will provide more information as time goes by that will enable us to carry out our public health measures right right no it is crucial that we make the initial contacts and you know we try to get persons in as much as possible so we would as soon as we're able we'll provide additional information to the public right so so we this this whole period of quarantine persons have you know have demonstrated several effects you know not just on the persons in quarantine what the person's work who are attending to them and we have put in place measures in terms of psychological support and we will continue to do so and especially when situations like this happen it just says to us that to look to see what else we can do to help to alleviate the fears and to calm the nerves and enable them to go through this period safely right now the virus is in 105 countries I think it is clear that it does not target a particular race however we will continue to review the information that has been provided to us and if we get any such information we will update you the virus does not discriminate and nor are we in terms of our strategy nationwide as a we we are presently going through the complete itinerary of that person enable in order to be able to do the contact tracing as I said it is very important for us to demonstrate whether the risk is localized or how wide it is because that is going to determine what kind of public health measures that we are going to have to put in no the person did come to Jamaica to attend a particular event I think it's an event that you have referred to right so yes but the investigations would be of a particular approach that would determine when the person actually demonstrated symptoms and and so whatever reasons why we are cautious to to sort of elaborate we don't want people at that event to start running all over the place and and and sounding alarm as if they have a virus I remember no the virus spreads up to this point based on the clinical information we have when persons displays symptoms through droplets through coughing sneezing that sort of thing so the further person may have attended an event doesn't necessarily mean that those persons are exposed it's subject to the investigation which is why the chief medical officer is being conservative until she has further invoked information well you know you you you you're really harsh on us I mean we learn top of this thing in live more clock and we call a press conference for 12:00 so I think you can create what we're doing fairly well so far terms of keeping the public informed as soon as the information is available we will make it available it's very important I mean we take I take the position and the government that there is no value there is no value to anyone in holding back information from the public we reserve the right to hold back information as it relates to the confidentiality of patient information as it is the case with any hospital arrangement none of us wants the world to know what our medical history our medical conditions are okay without our permission that's standard protocol in in medical in in clinical practice so we may have to manage that we reserve the right to withhold information so as not to create panic amongst persons who really ought not to feel panicked which is where we are cautious in terms of where that person went but everything else to my mind is is should be made public and that's what we're trying to do so in answer to your question as soon as we have the information but we're treating a matter as an absolute priority because containment requires efficiency of execution any other questions again we have we have the tool that you know and there are two or three others that are being worked on until they are officially up we'll just work on them any other yes the same well I think I think up cough it's only was a repetition for knowing the news before the news breaks actually mention what she came here for I don't know if she came here for other things I mean people traveled back and forth for all sorts of reasons but there was an event that she attended the person attended a funeral prayers not attended a funeral they attended a funeral and I don't know what else they may have come for I think it is important for the media to understand that in this initial phase where we need to make sure that we contact persons and we need to ensure that we get them to comply with the procedures that we would put in place it is with regards to that that we are not divulging everything at this time so as soon as we are able to we do have some information but as soon as we are able to provide that to you without jeopardizing the public health investigation that is taking place then we will do so I want to use the opportunity to acknowledge the head of our team mr Richard Thompson who is sitting to my far right your left and also mr Kevin Allen who is CEO of the University Hospital of course dr Bruce with the chief medical officer at the University of spittle that's the hospital where the patient is now in quarantine I really think that's a isolations our isolation I really think that maybe the dr

Bruce should just indicate because what we don't want is for people to feel they have to avoid the University Hospital just indicate what the isolation facilities involve and just to reassure the public that the University Hospital is continuing business as usual and providing the vital services that it is accustomed to providing dr Bruce Thank You minister so the University Hospital Mona has three what we call negative pressure isolation facilities which are facilities where we can house patients who as you know we consider were at risk for spreading or transmitting an infection such as this so we are currently using one of our isolation rooms and that was that started from yesterday but they the patient is not in contact with the rest of our patient population and the team that managed the patient has been trained as such so we're happy that both a situation for protection of the patient and the staff and the members of the public has been operationalized and we're very happy at this time with those protocols in other words the University Hospital is open for business it is fully functional and equipped to carry out its duties and as it relates that this particular patient they are not in contact with the rest of the population and therefore no one should feel exposed or overly exposed from attending to services to access services at the hospital the facilities there I've seen there are very good facilities they are made for this kind of thing coronavirus is not the only infectious disease there are several others that ever to deal with that you would not have known about it's just that this is the topical issue and we're keeping you informed so do not I repeat do not feel at the University Hospital somehow needs to either be picketed or to be avoided because we have this particular case treaty okay any other will close off if yes sir okay that's a good question so yesterday the cabinet of Jamaica led of course by the Honorable Prime Minister approved a submission that was carried there by myself supported by the team on either side of me to to allocate approximately 2 billion Jamaican dollars 19 something to bolster the response of the public health system to support the possibility of containment and case management as well as to strengthen the border control measures that are in place so a plan was presented a budget and the cabinet approve that plan and budget so it will see a number of things expanding certain types of equipment medic medicines training isolation or quarantining and all the associated activities that are related to that so yes we we have been out given the budget that we require based on the concern and the capacity to procure quickly also is one other any other question good afternoon everyone well the odd Pam is the national disaster coordinator we we spared a very robust national disaster risk management framework and for public health emergency of this nature the Ministry of Health is the lead entity but we all know that anything that can manifest itself into a wider crisis or a disaster takes greater coordination and a pooling of of major resources so you know from from from this perspective you'd realize that border control and security plays a critical role you're talking about customs and immigration you're talking about the possibility as it relates to food security and a number of different variables you'd have heard a minister often spoke already about some aspect of the border security measures so because it's it would take great coordination outside of the specific health component it requires a greater National Response process and coming out of the the meeting of the National Disaster Risk Management Council which is chaired by the most honorable Prime Minister Antonis he would have already given his charge for for the national framework to be activated and and to to look at then up kind of preparedness measure but know given where we are more of a kind of response process so it would requires require greater sectoral collaboration and greater resources so does the odd pen as the national disaster coordinator would be that coordinating role with the Minister of Health mean entity given that history is a public health emergency thank you all right so ladies and gentlemen I am sure you will hear from us in the coming days because I know you hear what is happening in terms of the follow-up activities there are certain decisions that may have to be taken which we will brief you on so issues our own public gatherings events that are on the national calendar that some of some of them you asked about earlier I have already confirmed that in terms of the Penn Relays the Ministry of Education and the Cabinet through the cabinet's instructions of advised schools around not participating in the Penn Relays this this year we will come in further on boys and girls jumps and on any other public gathering in the days coming the we think we have this matter under control in terms of the treatment and the containment of this individual the areas that we have no control over but we are assessing would be the period of time that a person showed symptoms but was out in the open so in this instance when they were transporting being transported to their ear there the hospital doctor to see the medical team but we have taken note of that we have done the interrogation we know who to contact we have already made contact and what we have to do is observe so we are doing the work while keeping our fingers crossed that this individual is the only affected individual at this point in time if anything changes as it relates to that or anything else we will inform you to help us to inform the public I'm going to close by asking the public through you and I thank you for the opportunity not to engage in unnecessary or to engage at all frankly speaking in speculation give me some other words to describe it rumours rumor mongering hysteria or otherwise the greatest challenge we have one of the big challenges we have is the the promotion of inaccurate information because it really promotes panic in our society which is not necessary I'm gonna ask the media well it is not your duty if you are not the ones sending out information to correct to the extent that you see information that is not accurate or you are doubtful about you use the toll-free number and call we have a media center here but you can use that number to clarify and help us to correct where that correction is required because we really want everyone to be on the same page so that there's no chance of misinterpretation or actions that become you know counter to what we are actually trying to do so we thank you again and we will follow up I'm sure in with the further developments thank you you've just seen our live broadcast of a Health Ministry's emergency press conference where it was announced that Jamaica now has the first imported case of kovat 19 Health Minister dr Christopher Tufton made the announcement at that just concluded press conference it was at the Ministry of Health the Prime Minister will also host a press conference shortly and we will be standing by to take that as soon as it begins a bit of background the infected person arrived in the island on March 4 and is from the border of st Thomas and st

Andrew now we'll have more details on this developing story in primetime news at 7:00 and that's where we put our wrap on the midday news and on this broadcast please stay with stay tuned present viewing and have a good day

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