Ministry of Health Minister’s Report and COVID-19 Update Press Conference

Hon. Renward R. Wells
Minister of Health, M.P.
Ministry of Health
Minister’s Report and COVID-19 Update Press Conference 
14th September, 2020 5:00 p.m.
 
Good Afternoon, Here is the latest update on COVID-19, as of Sunday, the 13th of September. 
 
The Bahamas has recorded 2,974 confirmed cases of COVID-19. Of that number – 
• 1, 344 have recovered;
• 1,545 cases are active; 
• 72 of those active cases are hospitalized;
• Unfortunately, 75 people have either died with or from COVID-19;
• there are 8 deaths under investigation.   
 
Presently New Providence has recorded a total of 2,013 cases, followed by:
• Grand Bahama with 597;
• Abaco, 100;
• Bimini, 54;
• Exuma, 24;
• Inagua, 17;
• Berry Islands, 15;
• Eleuthera, 12;
• There have been 8 confirmed cases in Cat Island;
• 8 in Long Island;
• 7 in Acklins;
• 5 in Crooked Island;
• 3 in Andros;
• 3 in Mayaguana; and 
• with 108 cases, the locations are pending. There has been a total of 15,196 tests completed to date.
 
As I communicated in the House of Assembly last Wednesday, the COVID-19 response strategy of increasing bed capacity, repairing health facilities and COVID-19 testing is ongoing.  
 
The South Beach Acute Care and Referral Centre was not originally designed to admit patients with COVID-19 but can now accommodate 16 beds. This is an increase from 10.  
 
The Legacy Unit at the Princess Margaret Hospital (PMH) has been expanded from 4 to 8 beds.   
 
There are 22 beds at Doctor’s Hospital West, and Doctor’s Hospital East has made 5 beds available for COVID-19 care.  
 
The bed capacity at the Cancer Association of The Bahamas in Grand Bahama has been expanded to 16.  Seven beds will soon be available for use in the Grand Bahama Health Services system.  
 
Social Services is still in the process of relocating the boarders at PMH. The PHA can confirm that nine (9) boarders have since been discharged from PMH and have been
accommodated outside of the hospital. An additional ten (10) boarders are currently being tested to ensure they are Covid-19 negative and will be discharged once tests are confirmed as such. This process, as indicated previously, will allow for more bed space at PMH. 
 
In a similar fashion, like the boarders at PMH, some persons are using the Morgue at PMH as a storage facility for their deceased loved ones. We understand that death and losing a loved one is an emotional and sensitive time. 
 
However, the Morgue at the Princess Margaret Hospital continues to be stretched to capacity as a result of the delayed collection of loved ones who have passed. Given the necessary restrictions due to COVID-19 that had to be put in place as it pertains to funerals, some members of the public are opting to wait until restrictions have been lessened to collect the bodies of their loved ones.  
 
We encourage members of the public to arrange with a mortuary company to secure and retrieve their loved ones.  We are also again urging the local mortuary companies to collect the bodies that persons have already paid them to transport to their funeral home of choice.  The failure of these companies to comply will have to unfortunately result in the existing legal storage fees being applied.
 
At the Rand Memorial Hospital, Part A of the Restoration Project is on schedule for completion at the end of September. This includes the main entrance, foyer, pharmacy, admissions and pediatrics; also, the Infectious Disease Unit Cancer Association project, the kitchen and cafeteria. 
 
The Container Operating Theatre Suites, Post Anesthesia Unit (PACU), and Central Sterile Supplies Department (CSSD), which are being funded by Build Health International and Direct Relief, are also expected to be completed by the end of this month