We would like to clarify that food supplies and cargo are included in one of the vital services. Because they are, we are working on a plan to ensure that these services continue during the next weeks. Therefore, we encourage people to not panic at this moment about the possibility of food supply. Tomorrow we will bring forward the plan which will outline how this will occur.
Saturday, April 11: Address of Island Governor Jonathan Johnson on Covid-19 infection status.
Please be patient during the download of this message if you have a slow internet connection
Over the past weeks we have been working together with the aim of preventing COVID-19 from being introduced to the island. Despite all of the precautionary measures taken, this evening I have to inform you, that one of the three tests taken has returned as positive. Unfortunately, this means that we now have COVID-19 on the island.
This positive test was one of the other two taken from persons on island and is not the patient with pneumonia. The patient who is positive is experiencing mild symptoms and is doing well. We are still waiting for the second tests to return for the patient in St. Maarten and for the results of the third person tested.
The positive case is considered a local transmission as this person has no travel history within the past weeks. This indicates that the virus has already been introduced to the island community and it is possible that more cases could follow.
We have had many measures in place since March 16th, with the intention that if something like this did occur, that the spread would be limited. But because of this new development, further measures will be implemented which will help contain the spread of the virus.
As of midnight tonight, Sunday, April 12th, we will go on a mandatory lock-down. This will be in place for at least the next two weeks.
This new measure is being taken to ensure your safety and the health of our community. We know that this may be inconvenient but it is necessary that we take these measures to ensure that we contain the spread of this virus.
More information on how vital services will continue during this time, will be communicated tomorrow afternoon.
In addition to this, all persons who may have had close contact with the patient are being contacted and will be in mandatory quarantine. These persons will be monitored and tested during the quarantine period.
It is very important that these measures are adhered to. The local police will play a central role in enforcing this lock down. All instructions from the police must be followed immediately. Fines will be implemented and given to those not adhering to the lock down.
Again, if you are experiencing any respiratory problems, do not come in to the hospital. Instead call to discuss your symptoms and you will then receive further instructions.
We have and will continue to take measures with the aim of protecting our community. But these measures are only effective with your co-operation. Adhere to the measures in place and continue to work together with us for the safety of our community.