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Statement by Medical Officer of Health, Dr Samuel Williams

Health Care 11 May, 2020 Follow News

Medical Officer of Health, Dr Samuel Williams

The Cayman Islands Government decided to undertake testing of public and private sector frontline staff as the best possible means of determining the spread of COVID-19 in our community, and containing the disease wherever it is found through rapid isolation measures, risk assessment and contact tracing.

As an added precaution Public Health is working with businesses that return positive test results to test any other employees where the results of the investigation suggest a need.

Precisely because of the prevention and control measures that the whole country has worked with us to implement, our overall numbers of confirmed cases have remained very low even after we began frontline testing of apparently healthy personnel. As an example, local supermarkets have been visibly practicing social distancing and prevention measures such as encouraging staff to wear personal protective equipment (PPE) for some weeks.

I would like to reassure the public that the virus is spread mainly by droplets. As such our general advice to the public, when in a public place, continues to be: practice social distancing, cough etiquette and wear a mask in enclosed public places. Avoid touching your face until you have returned home and washed your hands thoroughly.

With regards to another common concern, it should be noted that, as long as they are practicing the prevention measures just outlined, persons won’t get the coronavirus simply by “touching” food.

Indeed it is important that as a country we continue to practice these prevention measures until the Cayman Islands has eliminated COVID-19.

Also, shelter in place orders are still in place on Grand Cayman. This means we should stay home, unless it is essential.

If persons are concerned that they may have been in contact with a person who has COVID-19, or they have symptoms, they should call the flu hotline at tel. 1-800-534-8600, 345-947-3077 or flu@hsa.ky.

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