THERE continues to be an alarming rise in the number of novel coronavirus (COVID-19) cases, with Guyana recording 17 new cases in 24 hours.
Even as government continues to adjust the existing control measures to reduce the spread of the disease, there seems to be no end in sight.
Health authorities have so far tested 4,801 persons for COVID-19, with 4,371 being negative and 430 positive. Of the positive cases, 185 persons have recovered and 20 persons have lost their lives, but authorities are still monitoring 225 active cases. Three of those persons are being treated in the COVID-19 Intensive Care Unit (ICU).
It was reported that control measures instituted by the Government of Guyana to guard against the spread of COVID-19, are being reviewed daily, but President David Granger believes Guyanese need to play an equal role in the fight against the dreaded disease, as measures without compliance would be futile.
“The government cannot only enforce, we are calling on the population to observe those measures. If the measures are not observed, the population is at risk. And, only then will the government need to act,” said President Granger.
The president said government and other agencies need to engage, educate and explain what is happening, as these actions must precede enforcement. Enforcement, he believes, is the last stage, but engagement is the earlier stage.
Chief Medical Officer (CMO), Dr. Shamdeo Persaud, in an update on Tuesday, had said persons need to take note of the existing situation, especially in the hinterland regions where cases continue to rise daily.
The country, in the early days of the pandemic, had grown accustomed to Region Four (Demerara-Mahaica) being the epicentre for the disease, but this has since changed, and Regions Seven and Nine (Upper Takutu-Upper Essequibo) are now the “hotspots” for the disease.
Region Nine shares a wide border with Brazil, where COVID-19 is rampant. Globally, Brazil ranks second for the most cases of COVID-19 after the United States of America, and has reported over two million cases, with over 88,000 deaths. Dr. Persaud, however, sought to reassure persons that the Ministry of Public Health is doing everything possible to keep Guyanese safe.
COVID-19 remains a serious issue not just here in Guyana, but globally as well, and according to global statistics, there are 17.1 million cases of COVID-19, with over 668,000 deaths. And, with no approved treatment or cure, there is no assurance that persons will survive after contracting the disease.