BYisrael on record 6 deaths: Tobago in dangerous situation

The content originally appeared on: Trinidad and Tobago Newsday


Health Secretary Dr Faith BYisrael – Photo courtesy THA

Tobago recorded its deadliest day of the covid19 pandemic on Sunday.

The latest figures from the Division of Health, Wellness and Social Protection revealed four men, ages 61-81, and two women, 47 and 91 years old – all with comorbidities – died from the virus.

Thirteen new cases were also reported that took the active total to 1,428, with 29 patients in state isolation, 1,385 in home isolation and seven in ICU.

THA Secretary for Health, Wellness and Social Protection Dr Faith BYisrael said on Sunday, “Unfortunately, Tobago has recorded its single highest covid19-related death toll. We express sincerest condolences to the friends and family of those who have passed.”

BYisrael said the six fatalities took Tobago’s covid death toll to 201. “This represents a case fatality rate (number of deaths/number of positive cases) 3.43 per cent, in comparison Trinidad and Tobago’s case fatality rate is 3.13 per cent.”

She said, “Unfortunately, Tobago’s small size, our location as an island and our limited medical resources (one functioning hospital and exhausted medical staff) puts us in a very dangerous situation.

“Our five-bed ICU is filled and overflowing. We’ve had to make additional provision to treat our loved ones who have died with dignity. We continue to hear the public complaints about individuals trying to receive medical non-covid19-related care, but are unable to do so because our system is overwhelmed.”

The Division/TRHA recently commissioned a 20-foot supplemental refrigerated mortuary container, at the Scarborough General Hospital mortuary, which went into operation on Wednesday.

BYisrael added, “I’m bringing all of these to your attention because we are now in 2022, and have to recognise that we must learn to live with covid19.

“All estimates show that for another year or so, covid-19 will still be with us. It will therefore be critically important that we collectively and individually do all that we can to protect ourselves and our loved ones.”

Looking ahead to 2022, BYisrael urged Tobagonians to be cautious.

“Please keep washing your hands, wearing your mask correctly, social distancing, staying home when you are ill, and getting vaccinated. Collectively, if we follow these steps, we can withstand the harsh consequences of covid19.

“Tobago, we can do this together, 2022 is the year to work towards a healthier you. Together we can do this.”