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Trinidad to adopt new measures as COVID cases increase

Friday, July 31, 2020

PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad (CMC)—The Trinidad and Tobago government Friday announced that new measures aimed at preventing the further spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) would come into effect within the next 24 hours, as the country recorded a few clusters of the virus in recent days.

Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley, speaking during a news conference here, warned that “mathematically” the country could experience a growth in the number of cases after having recorded 13 in the past 24 hours. Trinidad and Tobago said that the number of passive cases overall were 169 since the first case was detected in March.

“You act now as firmly as you can to ensure you don't allow a free run of the virus….that could overcome the health system,” Rowley said, with the Chief Medical officer, Dr Roshan Parasram acknowledging there were geographical cases “and forming clusters in terms of geography as well as in terms of time”.

Rowley said that as a result of the new measures, the Secondary Entrance Assessment (SEA) examination set for August 20 could be affected as a result, indicating that another school had to be closed as a result of the contact tracing.

“We believe we would keep that SEA exercise on watch for another few days and if this trend continues in any significant way in the next couple days…we will have to act…but we have this operation going on with a view to having the examination on the 20th of August,” Rowley said.

He said that the situation would be similar to the operations of bars and restaurants and announced that there would be a reduction in the number of people who could gather in any one area from 25 to 10.

“We are also at this stage keeping public transport under watch and that may require an intervention if we continue on this path within the next 72 hours or there about into next week,” he said, adding what the authorities are trying to do is reduce the levels of risk.