New COVID-19 patient in St Lucia placed in Intensive Care Unit
Chief Medical Officer Dr Sharon Belmar-George has announced that the 25th case of COVID-19 in St Lucia has been recorded and that the patient has been sent to the Intensive Care Unit.
According to the CMO: "On Thursday, July 30, 2020, the Ministry of Health and Wellness received results of a positive COVID-19 case.
The individual is an 86-year-old male patient with a history of Diabetes, High Blood Pressure, investigated for prostate cancer with a history of surgery 2 weeks ago. He was transferred to the Respiratory Hospital on July 26, 2020, with fever and shortness of breath.
He is presently in the Intensive Care Unit at the Respiratory Hospital for management and care. The team has commenced investigations and contact tracing to establish the source and contain transmission. Updated information will be provided as received."
According to the CDC: "Among adults, the risk for severe illness from COVID-19 increases with age, with older adults at highest risk. Severe illness means that the person with COVID-19 may require hospitalization, intensive care, or a ventilator to help them breathe, or they may even die."
The CDC also says that people of any age with certain underlying medical conditions are at increased risk for severe illness from COVID-19. The conditions listed include cancer and type 2 diabetes mellitus.
The CDC says that those with type 1 diabetes mellitus and high blood pressure might be at an increased risk.
Belmar-George said that the new case brings the total number of cases reported to 25, 22 of which have fully recovered with threee patients remaining in care at the Respiratory Hospital.
A total of 2,968 tests have been conducted to date.
Belmar-George advised: "As we manage new cases and investigate possible contacts, the public is advised to take personal responsibilities to protect themselves and their family. We advise on responsible behavior without unnecessary panic. The public is advised that all protocols are still in place including the reduced numbers for public transportation and protocols for private sector establishments. These also include the use of face masks in public and maintaining safe physical distance from others."
St Lucia's five respiratory clinics remain open to facilitate anyone with respiratory signs and symptoms or concerns. The 311 Hotline is also available where concerns and questions can be addressed.
Belmar-George reiterated the importance of maintaining the standard recommendations for infection prevention and control which include:
- regular handwashing with soap and water or alcohol-based hand sanitizer where soap and water are not available.
- covering mouth and nose with disposable tissues or clothing when coughing and sneezing.