A 48-year-old Barbadian woman is the 11th person to die from COVID-19, the fourth in just over a week.

According to the Ministry of Health, she died earlier Wednesday at the Harrison Point isolation hospital where she was a patient for just under two weeks.

A statement said: “The Barbadian was on a ventilator as a result of respiratory complications from a range of health issues and comorbidities. The middle-aged woman was one of two patients in primary isolation at Harrison Point who was in ‘serious condition’.

Health and Wellness Minister Lieutenant Colonel Jeffrey Bostic Wednesday urged families and members of the same household to exercise care when interacting with each other while offering condolences to the unnamed woman’s family and friends.

As was the case with the ten other victims of the coronavirus, their identities have been withheld to prevent stigma and discrimination.

The ministry appealed to Barbadians to seek medical help early if they are having difficulty breathing or experiencing flu-like symptoms. The ministry emphasised this was extremely important in the case of the elderly, especially those who may have diabetes or hypertension and are therefore at high risk.

Lt Col Bostic gave an assurance that Government’s new plan to step up testing in communities across the island, announced by Prime Minister Mia Mottley Tuesday evening, will help to identify infected people and curb the spread of the viral illness.

He said: “The initiative is aimed at putting all COVID-positive persons showing symptoms of the disease, in government-run facilities where they can be closely monitored and receive medical care.

“People who are positive but asymptomatic will be placed in isolation hotels where they will be under medical observation. The government-funded initiative is intended to combine with ‘a national pause’ to stop the spread of the disease and save lives.”

In addition to the community health check, Lt Col Bostic pointed to the support of BAMP for Government’s new thrust to deploy widespread rapid antigen testing as a first step in helping to identify infected people.

Repeating a frequent declaration, the retired soldier said: “There will be no retreat, no surrender in the effort to keep every citizen safe and beat back COVID. “We care about every Barbadian and will fight unrelentingly to save every last one.”

The latest COVID-19 update shows the island recorded 16 new positive cases from 761 tests carried out by the Best-dos Santos Public Health Laboratory on Tuesday.

All but two of the 16 new cases were 14 Barbadians with one whose nationality is still to be determined. One of the new cases is someone who was previously sent to the Harrison’s Point hospital in St Lucy for assessment.

As a result, there are now 353 active cases on the island, the health ministry said.

The number of cases at Her Majesty’s Prisons Dodds remains at 361, consisting of 102 staff members and 259 male inmates.

So far, 22 of the most recent patients have recovered from the viral illness and were discharged from isolation.

To date, Barbados has recorded 1,443 confirmed cases – 580 females, 863 males – and 1,079 people have recovered.

The public health laboratory has so far completed 100,890 tests.

Source: Barbados Today

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