KINGSTON, Jamaica— Chief Medical Officer, Dr Jacquiline Bisasor-McKenzie, is encouraging people who use coronavirus (COVID-19) home test kits to report positive results to the health authorities.
She said that this will help the Ministry to better track the geographic spread of the virus on the island, especially in light of Wednesday’s (May 18) confirmation that the country is experiencing a fifth wave of infections.
Dr Bisassor-McKenzie was speaking at the virtual COVID Conversations digital press conference on May 18.
“What we know is that for persons who are formally engaged and may require leave from work, they are more likely to report the tests so that they can get their quarantine order, so that they will have the time off.
“For persons who are informally employed or who may not require that certification, they may not [report the positive tests], so we can’t be confident in the numbers that we are getting. But we do encourage persons to report the test results to the health departments, so that we can keep a track on the numbers,” she said.
Meanwhile, Portfolio Minister, Dr Christopher Tufton, said the National Health Fund (NHF) has already procured several of the tests, which have been distributed to health centres across the island.
“We will do our best to ensure, where we can, to make those available for testing. Otherwise, of course, you can get a test done at a private entity,” he said.