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Ten Westmeath residents test positive for Covid-19

  • Fit to be tied: Kim Wilson, the Minister of Health, was upset by the early media release of ten new cases of Covid-19 infection among residents at  Westmeath Residential and Nursing Home (Photograph by Blaire Simmons)

    Fit to be tied: Kim Wilson, the Minister of Health, was upset by the early media release of ten new cases of Covid-19 infection among residents at Westmeath Residential and Nursing Home (Photograph by Blaire Simmons)

  • Westmeath Residential and Nursing Home (Photograph by Akil Simmons)

    Westmeath Residential and Nursing Home (Photograph by Akil Simmons)


Ten more cases of Covid-19 were identified yesterday at the island’s biggest care home.

国语高清videossexotvThe diagnoses took the number of cases confirmed at the Westmeath Residential and Nursing Home in Pembroke to 13 — 11 residents and two staff.

That number is expected to change as the majority of the test results from the home have still to be released to the home and the public. All ten new cases are residents at the home and none are believed to have shown any symptoms yet.

The first resident who tested positive at the home, on Monday, is understood to still be in a stable condition at the King Edward VII Memorial Hospital.

Health officials tested 54 seniors at the home on Wednesday and the majority of staff members were also tested.

More tests on staff are expected to be carried out today.

国语高清videossexotvThe first Westmeath staff member was found to have the virus on April 10 and the second on April 14.

Kim Wilson, the Minister of Health, said last night that testing for the coronavirus had been carried out at four of the island’s 21 care homes, including the Matilda Smith Williams Seniors Residence in Devonshire, which has also been hit by the virus, and Westmeath.

She added that 116 residents and 136 staff members in total had been tested. But she refused to identify the other two homes where tests had been carried out.

Ms Wilson told a press conference: “I’m not sure that’s a necessary question.”

She added that care homes would not be identified “unless we have to, from a public health point of view, if we see transmission within the residence”.

David Burt, the Premier, said he did not anticipate that the shelter-in-place regulations put in place to curb the spread of Covid-19 would be extended beyond May 2.

He added that the Cabinet would meet on Tuesday and the public would be told the next day about “precisely what the next phase will look like”.

However, he warned that it would not be business as usual, “where everything is open”.

Ms Wilson said health officials had met Bermudian scientist Carika Weldon, who is running the Bermuda Government Molecular Diagnostic Testing Laboratory at Southside, St David’s, to draw up a national testing strategy to include rest homes, as well as essential and healthcare workers.

国语高清videossexotvMs Wilson said 80 coronavirus test results had been processed yesterday but that it would be “premature to disclose any details”.

More test results will be released today, but none are expected on Sunday.

国语高清videossexotvThe minister said 11 patients were now being treated in the King Edward VII Memorial Hospital for Covid-19, with four of them in intensive care.

She added she was unaware how many of the inpatients were on ventilators.

国语高清videossexotvMr Burt said that drive-through testing for frontline workers had been launched yesterday at Southside, although there were initial “hiccups”.

国语高清videossexotvHe added that the testing would continue over the weekend.

国语高清videossexotvMr Burt said that unemployment benefits would be fast-tracked for those who had still not received payments and payouts were expected to be made on Tuesday.

国语高清videossexotvHe added that the Department of Workforce Development had been given extra resources to tackle claims.

国语高清videossexotvA total of $7.7 million has been paid out so far to more than 5,000 out-of-work residents.

Mr Burt said it was planned to add office supply companies and computer supply stores to the list of businesses allowed to operate on a limited basis from Monday.

They will have permission to run under the same restrictions as other businesses — from Monday to Wednesday by customers’ surnames and only for prepaid pick-up or delivery.

Wayne Caines, the Minister of National Security, said a British Airways flight that arrived last night brought 97 stranded residents home from the UK and that it would depart today with 74 British residents.

国语高清videossexotvHe added: “All arriving passengers have been pre-processed electronically by the Department of Immigration to minimise contact with our Customs officers.

“From a safety standpoint, as part of the landing process, each officer conducting inspection duties will have the appropriate personal protection equipment and each passenger will be given a face mask, as well as have their temperature checked in the arrival hall.”

Returning residents were taken by the Royal Bermuda Regiment to one of the government quarantine centres for the mandatory 14-day isolation period.

Mr Caines said the BA flight also delivered “critical and much needed medical supplies and personal protection equipment”, including 12,000 coronavirus test kits and 10,000 high-protection N95 masks.

国语高清videossexotvHe added that 73 businesses had now been approved to operate under heavy restrictions.

To read statements in full from the Premier and the Minister of Health, click on the PDF link under Related Media”

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Published Apr 26, 2020 at 8:00 am (Updated Apr 26, 2020 at 12:53 pm)

Ten Westmeath residents test positive for Covid-19

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