Health Minister Kim Wilson sounded the warning last night that the current spread of COVID-19 in Bermuda “is extensive” as the number of active cases climbed to 213, with another 33 new cases confirmed on Friday (March 26).

Fourteen of the new cases were classified as “local transmission with known contact as they are associated with known cases”. The other 19 cases are now under investigation.

It was also noted that “these cases are among residents with no currently identified link to other known cases of history of travel in the past 14 days”.

Four recoveries were also recorded since the last update.

Speaking on the latest 1,108 test results, the Minister urged people to get tested “to know their status”.

“Now more than ever, I strongly suggest people get tested for COVID-19 and if you do not feel well, or have cold or allergy symptoms, put yourself in quarantine,” said Ms Wilson.

“This current spread is extensive, and people need to know their status.”

There are currently 213 active cases, of which;

·          All 213 are under public health monitoring and;

·          None are in the hospital, and none in critical care.

“Since March 2020, Bermuda has recorded 947 total confirmed cases of COVID-19; out of those, 722 persons have recovered, and 12 persons have sadly succumbed to COVID-19,” a Ministry spokeswoman added.

“The mean age of all confirmed positive cases is 41 years (median: 39 years), and the ages range from less than one year to greater than 100 years.

“The mean age of all currently active cases is 32 years (median: 32 years), and the ages range from less than ten years (age group: 0-9 years) to greater than 80 years (age group: 80-100 years).

“The mean age of all deceased cases is 75 years (median: 77 years), and the ages range from less than 60 years (age group: 50-59 years) to greater than 80 years (age group: 80-100 years).”

The source of all cases is as follows:

·         238 are imported

·         641 are classified as local transmission of which:

·         549 are local transmission with known contact/source and

·         92 are local transmission with an unknown contact/source

·         68 are under investigation

“As investigations proceed, transmission categories may change.

“Of the over 190,000 test results reported, the mean age of all persons tested is 43 years (median:  42 years), and the ages range from less than one year to greater than 100 years.

“The seven-day average of our real-time reproduction number is above one, and Bermuda’s current country status remains ‘Sporadic Cases’. It is anticipated that this status will change over the next few days.”

To facilitate more testing, the Ministry of Health has set up “two new walk-in and drive-through pop-up locations that will offer COVID-19 testing to the community starting next week”, Ms Wilson added.

“You do not need an appointment to get tested at these locations, but please bring a photo ID.

“The locations are TCD (outdoor drive-through lanes), Monday 29 March and Wednesday 31 March, from 5:30 – 7:30pm. Horseshoe Bay Beach car park, Monday, April 5 and Wednesday, April 7, from 4:30 – 7:30pm.

“Both walk-in and drive-through testing will be offered at TCD, while only walk-in testing will be offered at Horseshoe Bay Beach car park. A photo ID will be required.”

Minister Wilson also reminded the public about the need to assist contact tracing: “There are people who do not want to cooperate with contact tracers. If a contact tracer contacts you, it is vital that you cooperate. Your assistance can help reduce the spread of the virus and save lives. The quicker we can identify people who may be positive for COVID-19, the quicker we can stop the transmission of the disease.

Our contact tracers are working tirelessly, seven days a week, hours on end, to help protect this community. We must all do our part, so please, help them to help us all.”