Health Minister Kim Wilson confirmed another 37 new cases of COVID-19 in Bermuda, with 40 people with the virus now in hospital, including eight in the Intensive Care Unit.
The total number of active cases has reached 848 as public health officials monitor 808 cases.
Since the Ministry’s update on Thursday (April 15), she said there have been three new hospital admissions and that only one patient in the ICU is intubated.
“We also send our prayers and thoughts to each of them and their families.”
Speaking at the latest briefing tonight, the Minister said: “Two of the new cases are classified as imported.”
One returning resident arrived here on a British Airways flight from London on April 6, who tested positive on their Day 8 test. The other arrived here from Miami on March 31 and tested positive on their Day 14 test.
“Twelve of the new cases are classified as local transmission with known contact as associated with known cases.
“The additional 23 new cases are classified as under investigation. These cases are among residents with no currently identified link to other known cases or history of travel in the past 14 days,” the Minister added.
“There were 55 recoveries and 0 deaths. Bermuda has 2060 total confirmed positive cases.”
“Yesterday I announced that Bermuda had reached more than 2,000 positive cases. Today that number is 2,060.
“We must continue to look beyond the numbers and see the people, understand their concerns.
“We must also remember and keep in our prayers the families who have lost a loved one due to coronavirus,” she added.
Meanwhile, Premier David Burt announced tonight that as of next Tuesday, April 20, the curfew will start much earlier at 8pm and run through to 6am.
The following adjustments to the existing Stay at Home regulations will take effect:
- Curfew from 8pm – 6am
- Retail stores can open for curbside & delivery
- Restaurants can open for take out & delivery
- Parks reopen
- Remote working continues to be mandatory where able
- Tynes Bay will reopen
- Groceries stores & gas station continue on alphabetical system
- Laundromats open by appointment to one household only
- Outdoor construction & landscaping able to resume.
- Farmers & fishermen allowed to sell
- Courier services allowed to operate
- Recreational boating allowed
- Mixing of households “is still unlawful”
“Permitted businesses will continue to be able to be open between the hours of 7am and 7pm,” said Mr Burt.
“Retail stores, including pet stores, will be permitted to open for curbside service and delivery services. Restaurants and food service will resume for takeout and delivery only, subject to all necessary public health precautions, just like retail stores.
“Remote working will continue to be mandatory, however, we are working with the Chamber of Commerce and other stakeholders to provide a framework of testing employees before the return to work in those areas such as retail and food service that will reopen. This will promote a safe working environment for workers and customers alike.
“The Tynes Bay drop off facility will reopen for its usual operating hours on the alphabetical system. Supermarkets, grocery stores, and gas stations will continue to operate on the alphabetical system.
“Laundromats will permitted to open, and similar to last year, they will be open by appointment with one household at a time to minimize the mixing of households.
“Licensed fishermen and registered commercial farmers will be permitted to sell local fish and local produce respectively, the roadside and also to engage in delivering.
“Outdoor construction and landscaping services will be able to resume. Courier services will be permitted to operate. Parks will reopen, but the mixing of households, as I must remind, is still unlawful.
“Recreational boating will be allowed, but the mixing of households will not be allowed. This will be strictly enforced. All of the restrictions at this time are unchanged.”
On skepticism about taking the vaccine, the Minister added: “Against this backdrop, some in our community are choosing not to get vaccinated.
“If you have questions, visit coronavirus.gov.bm and other reputable sites. If you want firsthand knowledge about the vaccine call your doctor. Ask all the questions you have about the vaccine and whether or not you should get it.
“There is no single decision process,” she said.
“People decide to get the vaccine because they want to protect themselves and others. Some make the decision because they want to travel when it is safe to do so. Others do it because it is the right thing for our community and they want to get back to the new level of normal.
“If you haven’t already done so, register today to get vaccinated. Having the vaccine does not necessarily stop you from getting the disease but it does lessen the severity of the disease if you do get it.
“To this end, I repeat my appeal to doctors in Bermuda to give us some of your time. If every doctor in Bermuda takes one or two shifts on a weekday evening or during the day on Saturday or Sunday, we will succeed in reaching our goal of community immunity by Bermuda Day – May 28. If you can help, please send an email to Dr Brett Lefkowitz at. And, thank you to all those medical professionals who have already come forward to say they will assist.
“As revised restrictions are put into place, I must restate that the UK variant of the coronavirus is extremely contagious and the symptoms can be difficult to pinpoint. Symptoms include cough, tiredness, headache, muscle ache and sore throat. If you experience any of these symptoms please contact your doctor and make an appointment to get tested. Likewise, if you have been in contact with someone who has these symptoms, immediately make an appointment to get tested.”