A 68-year-old man is the Cayman Islands’ first covid19 case.
The islands’ head of government, Premier Alden McLaughlin, responded by saying the country is “planning for the worst while working very hard to do our best to ensure we don’t get there.”
McLaughlin and health officials confirmed the case on Thursday afternoon at a press conference. A report on the Cayman Compass website said the patient is a visitor from Italy, who was transferred from a cruise ship to Health City Hospital in Cayman Islands for a critical cardiac issue.
He did not have respiratory symptoms when he was admitted, but developed them later.
The patient was among six people tested for the virus. Four others tested negative and the result of the last test is pending.
The website said the patient is in isolation at the hospital and is “doing well.”
The islands’ government is said to be “confident that all the appropriate measures have been and continue to be taken and the patient poses no risk to the broader community.”
The Caymans Islands had already cancelled a major primary school athletic event on Friday and is considering “drastic measures,” possibly including closing schools, to contain the spread of the virus.
McLaughlin added that government is in constant contact with business, school and health officials.
Health Minister Dwayne Seymour said at the press conference the country is prepared to manage any outbreak.