Local News

Kayaks on flight with Grenada’s first COVID-19 patient

Health officials in Grenada might be forced to look towards the small sister isle of Carriacou in the search for persons who were on board the Virgin Atlantic flight from England that brought the island’s first positive COVID-19 patient.

Well-placed sources told THE NEW TODAY newspaper that several natives of Carriacou travelled on the plane that landed at the Maurice Bishop International Airport (MBIA) with the woman as they came to attend a wedding on the small island.

A source who asked not to be named said that some of these visitors were spotted intermingling with a number of persons at the function.

This newspaper was told that most of the visiting natives of Carriacou are from the small village of Petite Carenage.

In addition, the wedding which was said to be “well attended” took place on a beach known as “LeLete” and that the married couple is now staying at a guest house in Harvey Vale.

The source said that a local living in Harvey Vale got married to a woman yesterday and that she flew into the island on March 13 for the wedding.

The bride is said to be from the sister isle of Carriacou but living in the United Kingdom.

Sources also told THE NEW TODAY that a female Grenadian professional who was also on the flight from London has gone into self-imposed isolation after showing signs of the Covid-19 virus.

The individual has also taken a test which was sent to Trinidad & Tobago to determine if she is affected by the virus.

Health Minister Nickolas Steele who spoke at a mid-day press briefing in St. George’s disclosed that the island’s first COVID-19 patient landed at the airport on March 16.

Describing it as “an imported case” from the United Kingdom, the minister told reporters that the woman became symptomatic on the following day (March 17), was tested and it came back positive from the Trinidad-based Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA).

“The officials of the Ministry of Health are now aggressively conducting contact tracing. I can assure you that our very capable medical team has been actively following up on and engaging in contact tracing (and) we are already moving to isolate and monitor several other individuals who were in close contact with the patient. This will continue for the next 14 days at minimum,” he said.

According to Minister Steele, the woman who tested positive is now in isolation to prevent the potential spread of the disease.

“The patient is exhibiting mild symptoms, we are encouraged but we are not complacent,” he said.

“We have been working assiduously to prevent the introduction of COVID-19 onto our shores,” he added.

The minister did not give details about the woman but sources have said that she came to the island to attend a funeral of the son of a former policewoman that took place in River Sallee in St. Patrick.

THE NEW TODAY understands that the COVID-19 patient stayed at a small hotel in the north of the island.

Minister Steele called on Grenadians to engage in more “social distancing” to avoid the possible spread of the disease on the island.

“I implore you that we need to maintain social distancing.  We are aware of individuals in our society that do not have the discipline to date, to maintain social distancing…but we must have the discipline as well to do it…and those irresponsible individuals are putting the rest of us at risk,” he declared.

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