by Linda Straker
- 3,396 PCR tests done as of 25 August
- 2,684 tests done at WINDREF at SGU
- 712 tests done at General Hospital’s new laboratory
Health Minister Nickolas Steele said that 5 months since the first person was diagnosed with Covid-19, approximately 3% of Grenada’s population of 110,000 has been tested for the virus which has infected and caused the death of millions worldwide.
“As of 25 August, 3,396 PCR tests were done,” Steele said while presenting the ministerial statement during Friday’s sitting of the House of Representatives. He is the Member of Parliament for St George’s South – one of the largest voting constituencies.
Grenada’s first case in March 2020, was a female passenger entering the country from the United Kingdom.
Steele said that 2,684 of the tests were done at the Windward Islands Research and Education Foundation (WINDREF) which is based at St George’s University (SGU). “In this last week, of that amount, they did 1,475; that is because they have tested all of the individuals who are residing in Grenada who are affiliated with SGU. Students, faculty, and employees have all been tested,” Steele said.
“This represents a wide cross-section of Grenada and therefore can be seen as a sample of our population. Just in case there was any individual out there with Covid-19 that we did not pick up,” he said.
Those affiliated with the university reside at various communities throughout the island.
The remaining 712 tests were done at the General Hospital’s new laboratory facility which is recognised and accepted as a PCR testing facility. When the contagion started, Grenada did not have the ability to test on the island and all testing was done at the Trinidad-based Caribbean Public Health Agency (CarPHA). As of 25 August, Grenada recorded 24 positive cases and they all are medically recovered. The last case on 31 July 2020, was a passenger arriving on an international flight from the USA.
Steele used the opportunity to reinforce “that one positive case of Covid-19 in one jurisdiction means that Covid-19 is everywhere,” and called on citizens not to become complacent because the contagion continues to infect people.
“We need to be aware that there will be more numbers as we allow individuals to enter the state. With our quarantine and screening process we will find more individuals; we just need to be aware of the difference between community spread and picking up at our borders,” he said. Grenada’s testing stock for the contagion currently counts at 6,841 PCR test kits.
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