New COVID cases will not affect opening of schools – PM Skerrit

Confirmation of a third new case of COVID-19 in Dominica will not affect the reopening of schools on the island.

Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit said on his Anou Palay Programme over the weekend, the reopening of schools will go ahead as planned.

Health Minister, Dr. Irving McIntyre, on Saturday, confirmed a third active Covid-19 case on the island within the past ten days.

These three cases, which have increased the total number of confirmed cases in Dominica to 21, have all occurred since Dominica’s borders were reopened.

This latest case was identified as a 33-year-old female who travelled from New York and arrived at Douglas Charles airport on Wednesday the 26th of August.

Just recently, education officials announced that teachers are expected to return to school on September 1st and students on September 7th.

“The caller is asking whether the reopening of schools would be affected because of this case, I don’t think so; there is no community spread, [not] any evidence of community spread,” Prime Minister Skerrit said.

He said the infected person never had the opportunity to mingle in the community or the country as that case was captured at the airport and the individual went through secondary screening as is mandated by the protocols and was sent straight into quarantine to await the results.

“The results came back positive and the person was taken into the isolation unit at Dominica-China Friendship Hospital. So, I don’t think it will affect the reopening of schools,” the Prime Minister stated.

The Ministry of Education on Monday launched its guidelines and protocols for the reopening of schools this month.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Skerrit is encouraging business owners in Dominica to conduct more temperature tests in the fight of the dreaded Covid-19 Pandemic.

He thanked the business places for their collaboration and cooperation so far and reminded them that “we cannot give up; we cannot become complacent” as a country.

“And so, the temperature tests at the business places, at the restaurants, at the hotels and supermarkets, the bars, we need to do more of it,” he stated…“There is no big science with this; there is no difficulty, let us do it because it helps in our fight against Covid-19.”

The prime minister also reiterated his call for members of the public to continue following the guidelines and protocols to reduce the risk of the pandemic.

 “The issue of respiratory hygiene we have been told so many times in terms of coughing and in terms of wearing our masks, in terms of hand sanitizing, we have to do those things and we have to do it more often,” he advised. “The more we do these things, the more we reduce on the risk associated with coming into contact with Covid-19.”

Skerrit added, “We are doing some of it but we are not doing enough of it.”

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