Wednesday, September 1, 2021

Covid and lockdowns slam Caribbean

Caribbean countries grappling with covid19 | Trinidad and Tobago Newsday - Clint Chan:
August 31, 2021 - "Antigua and Barbuda, Puerto Rico, Guadeloupe and Martinique are among some of the Caribbean countries that have been hardest hit within recent times by covid19. According to a Jamaica Observer report on Monday, the covid19 delta variant is now the major strain of covid19 in Antigua and Barbuda....

"In Puerto Rico, several restriction have been implemented to reduce the spread of covid19 on the island. These include closing certain private businesses [and] banning alcohol sales after midnight.... An Associated Press report on Monday said these measures will be in effect from September 2-23. Puerto Rico government spokesman Pedro Pierlusi said, 'We are on the right track but there was no alternative'....

"An August 16 CGTN report said the French navy transported 100 tonnes of oxygen to its Caribbean dependency of Martinique to assist health care personnel in treating covid19 infections there. The report said Martinique and Guadeloupe, another French Caribbean territory, have been experiencing unprecedented incidence rates of covid19, The report said both islands are under strict lockdowns....

"An August 11 Travel Weekly report said Jamaica imposed tighter restrictions to curb a rise in covid19 cases there. At a news conference on August 10, Prime Minister Andrew Holness said the restrictions will be in effect until August 31. He warned no movement in public may happen if the numbers of covid19 cases do not drop. The restrictions include 7 am-5pm curfews, Monday to Friday; 6 pm-5 am. Saturday curfews; 2 pm-5 am Sunday curfews; nightclubs closed; gyms, zoos, restaurants and bars open at 50 per cent capacity, with social distancing in effect; and mandatory mask-wearing in public.
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Jamaica announces coronavirus lockdown with health system on brink | Reuters - Kate Chappell:
August 20, 2021 - "Jamaica will prohibit residents from leaving their homes for seven days spread over three weekends to contain an upsurge in coronavirus infections and shield its healthcare system, Prime Minister Andrew Holness said. The Caribbean nation has been battling a third wave of infections, with the presence of the highly contagious Delta variant confirmed on the island....

"Jamaica is to start its restrictions on movement on Sunday, with the first lockdown lasting three days, Holness said. There will be an identical three-day ban on movement the following weekend, and a one-day lockdown on Sunday, Sept. 5. Jamaicans will be required to remain at home unless they are essential workers, although there will be some flexibility for citizens who have international travel plans, or appointments for a vaccination. The country's vaccination efforts have been sluggish, with only 5% of the population fully vaccinated."
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France extends Covid-19 lockdown measures in Caribbean territories - France 24:
August 25, 2021 - "France's government decided to tighten restrictions in Martinique and Guadeloupe earlier this month as spikes in infections overwhelmed hospitals ... in the Caribbean islands, which have been hit hard by the Delta variant. The measures included closing beaches and shops selling non-essential items, as well as restrictions on people's movements. Local authorities also advised tourists to leave the islands....

"Covid-19 infections have also soared in the Pacific islands of French Polynesia, where local authorities announced a tightening of restrictions on Saturday, including an 8pm nightly curfew and the closure of schools, restaurants and bars for two weeks.

"While well over half of people in mainland France have now received two vaccination doses, rates in its overseas territories, from the Caribbean to the Indian Ocean to the Pacific, have lagged well behind. According to the independent COVIDTracker website, just under a quarter of the populations of Guadeloupe and Martinique have received a first dose of a vaccine."
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