The Ministry of Health & Wellness wishes to address recent concerns as it relates to the reporting of COVID-19 deaths in country, in particular the recent numbers reflected on the COVID-19 Dashboard last week.
The information presented on the dashboard indicated that reported deaths caused by COVID-19 increased by seven (7) from 823 deaths on 7th September 2022 to 830 deaths on 8th September 2022.
The Ministry wishes to clarify that the increase reflected was as a result of autopsy reports received on that date (7th September 2022) that characterized the deaths of individuals who died under circumstances that required an autopsy report – this means that they were not under a physician’s care at the time of their death. For clarification, these individuals were not known to the health system to have a COVID-19 defining illness that required hospitalization. These deaths occurred between 30th July 2022 and 27th August 2022.
Additionally, the Ministry can confirm that over the past several months, the number of newly reported cases testing positive via the RT-PCR or nucleic acid amplification test protocol has shown a steady decline. This decline matches the decrease or low rate of patients being hospitalized because of COVID-19. Overwhelmingly, less than 90% of patients admitted to hospital with COVID-19 are there because of a COVID-19 defining illness. This means that they are admitted for some other health challenge.
As COVID-19 remains very much a part of the communicable diseases’ platform, the Ministry of Health & Wellness encourages residents to arm themselves with all opportunities to stay safe by getting vaccinated and following the safety protocols.
Residents are also encouraged to get tested for COVID-19 if they feel unwell or are experiencing any of the known symptoms of the virus like fever, cough, and fatigue. Persons who are immunocompromised or who have comorbidities like diabetes, hypertension, asthma, lung disease and/or obesity should seek medical attention if they test positive.