During this COVID-19 fight, nine persons have lost their lives, Minister of Health the Hon. Dr. Duane Sands explained during a COVID-19 Update Press Conference at the Ministry of Health, Thursday, April 16, 2020. “Our condolences go out to the family of the latest victim, and to the families of the eight other people who lost their lives to the virus. Let us keep these families in our prayers in their time of grief,” Dr. Sands stated. He noted that earlier in the day on April 16, the Ministry of Health confirmed an additional case of COVID-19, bringing the total number of confirmed cases in The Bahamas to 54 – 45 in New Providence, seven in Grand Bahama, one in Bimini and one in Cat Cay.
The Health Minister stated that currently, there have been:
668 samples tested for COVID-19;
54 have been confirmed positive, an increase of one from yesterday;
612 tests were confirmed negative; and
Zero samples are pending.
He said, “At the last press conference, we advised that persons suffering from comorbidities are at a very high risk and can experience death if COVID-19 is contracted.
The elderly, those 60 and older with and without chronic diseases;
Those with chronic diseases – for example, people with hypertension, diabetes, kidney disease, chronic lung disease, including asthma, heart disease, sickle cell disease and the morbidly obese;
Those who are immune compromised – such as those with HIV/AIDS, or cancer and those on medicines such as steroids or chemotherapy;
Those who are pregnant.
The Health Minister also broke down the information related to the nine lives lost.
Dr. Sands explained that these cases are from the category of the most vulnerable.
Their ages range from 57 to 91 years old
Seven out of the nine cases who died had comorbidities, or underlying illnesses;
Four out of nine or 44.4 percent of the cases were obese
Three out of nine or 33.3 percent of the cases suffered from hypertension;
Two out of nine or 22.2 percent of the cases experienced asthma;
One out of nine or 11.1 percent of the cases suffered from either sleep apnoea, dyslipidaemia (or high lipids in the blood), renal failure and diabetes;
There are five males and four females.
The Health Minister said, “My fellow Bahamians, it is a fact that as of April 16th, our COVID-19 confirmed deaths are 6.4 times more likely to have comorbidities or underlying conditions.”