UPDATE (with video): Eleven confirmed cases of coronavirus in Dominica, four more to be retested

Dr. Shalauddin Ahmed

National Epidemiologist, Dr. Shalauddin Ahmed, confirmed on Wednesday evening, that Dominica now has eleven positive cases of COVID-19 and another four ‘probable’ cases.

Dr. Ahmed was among health officials who spoke at a press briefing on Wednesday.

His announcement follows a statement which was made earlier in the day by Medical Director of the Dominica China Friendship Hospital, Dr. Ruby Blanc, which revealed that in addition to the seven confirmed cases announced by Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit on Tuesday, there were four ‘probable’ cases on the island.

The National Epidemiologist gave a statistical analysis of the coronavirus in Dominica. He said the situation is like a “war” – a war that has just begun.

“Thus far we have sampled 142, with 118 tested. 11 tested positive and 103 negative, with 4 tests requiring a rerun meaning that it is borderline and requires a re-testing to be conclusive,” Dr. Ahmed said.

He added that all confirmed cases have been hospitalized and isolated. 10 of the 11 cases, he explained, came from one location and all of the subsequent 9 cases in that location came from contacts of the index case.

He said contact tracing continues and so far a total of 29 contacts are being investigated from the index case.

“Based on our level two results, we may conduct further investigations at the community level,” Dr. Ahmed said.

He also said some 58 people are quarantined in four apartments at St. James Place in Portsmouth and so far, a total of 86 people have gone through the quarantine process.

Dr. Ahmed stressed that social distancing, washing of hands and proper hygiene are key to combatting the disease.

“This is the war and it has just begun. We need social distancing, frequent hand washing and if you are sick, stay home and keep the elderly at home at much as possible. Be hydrated and take proper rest,” he said.

He also stated that community work is still being done and so far Dominica has the highest rate of testing in the OECS.

“The fight is on. You need to listen to us and play your part,” Ahmed stated.

The video of Wednesday’s press briefing is posted below.

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  1. Dilma
    March 26, 2020

    I really appreciated this press briefing. Thank you to the state

  2. March 26, 2020

    Some people head is hard .sorry to say but who can’t hear will feel.let us all listen and respect the clear instructions.

  3. The Watchman
    March 26, 2020

    “But if the watchman sees the sword coming and does not blow the trumpet, so that the people are not warned, and the sword comes and takes any one of them, that person is taken away in his iniquity, but his blood I will require at the watchman’s hand” Eze 33:6
    It’s good to listen to all the holy and concerned announcements from our holy and spiritual leaders.
    I don’t know if DNO will post my comment because generally speaking truth offends, but here is my observation: I take note of the timing of the coronavirus and somehow it came during the time of Easter, one of our holiest times of the Christian calendar. That’s the time we see more people in church, the time we celebrate the death, burial and Resurrection of Christ. Somehow this year, less than 3 months after the same local religious body violated their spiritual and biblical consciences to promote and partake in the evil of politicians during the Dec. 6th election, our churches are forced to close doors during Easter

  4. Dean Attidore
    March 26, 2020

    A round of applause for this myopic government. They allowed flights in. They allowed borders to remain open. They did not force quarantine in a supervised facility for all entrants to the country since the outbreak began.

    They have themselves to blame, and they were not petitioned against by the people.

    Now, all YOU can do is keep away from others. Isolate until the numbers can be controlled. Whilst there remains the free movement of people, it will be nigh on impossible to contain as people will not know who is and who isn’t infected. You, the reader, may be already infected without showing any symptoms (yet!) and may go to friends and family, unwittingly infecting them also. This is what lockdowns are trying to prevent. The incubation period of 1-14 (ish) days means you can spread this without showing symptoms for that period. You need to allow the healthcare system a fighting chance by not overloading them.

    I am in the UK and we are further along so I speak from…

  5. Papa Noelle
    March 26, 2020

    Don’t complain because Dominica was the first CARICIM country with the capacity to test for Covid19. So Dock tar Marking Tire was right

    • Mohiuddin Ahmed
      March 27, 2020

      May Allah SWT protect the people of Dominica.

  6. Barack
    March 26, 2020

    U think pm stupid all Caribbean countries affected by covid 19 will receive money he wanted Dominica to be counted I want u all to take a look at the press conference on 25/3/20 the man smiling the entire press conference something of such magnitude and take a look of any of videos during the election rallies omg

  7. Ras B
    March 26, 2020

    Numbers are rising at unprecedented rates. We need to apportion blame exactly where it belongs, This disease and its impact on Dominica is as a result of Dr Skeritt’s stubbornness, his lies and partisan practices and the incompetence of our Ministry of health……….. In Dominica, this should be renamed Skeritt’s disease. Look at BVI they have no cases and guess what? They have closed their borders. Something that we good hearted, clear thinking Dominicans have been requesting. Dr Skerrit be aware, truth pressed in earth will rise again. The truth is incontrovertible malice may attack it, ignorance may deride it, but in the end, there it is.
    Could that unfortunately, foolish statement from LIAT last week have been referring to a Dominican who was brought into the country? No other regional papers carried the story! If so it took our ‘excellent team’ to diagnose the disease six days after liat’s announcement.
    Dominica, Dominica my tears flow for…

    Admin: There are now two cases in the BVI

  8. Dean Attidore
    March 26, 2020

    This is exactly what I said to happen if the borders remained open. I am in the UK and have seen what happens. If you compare by population, Dominica has it worse than the UK. Ironically it was UK that brought it to Dominica. Why couldn’t the government just see what’s happening elsewhere and apply clear common sense. It was not about risk mitigation, it was about risk avoidance. The government took the former approach as opposed to the latter. This is the result. The only people to stay at home and to maintain social distancing and improved sanitation while the health care system tries to deal with this. All you needed to do to close the borders. Protecting lives and future economy versus protecting the current economy was foolish and short-sighted.

  9. Cool
    March 26, 2020

    A Virus that’s 3 months old and already killed 20,000 world wide brings a serious matter on our shores, but know the PM find to be goofing around. You have 8 ICU beds and your number of Covid 19 cases just hit double digits In 3 days. I am very disappointed on how this is being handled in Dominica. I saw crowds at the banks, supermarkets and so forth. Why are we not activating the soldiers and the police officers to over see these areas and to ensure people are 6 feet apart? Why are we not ordering mask and asking people to tie their faces in the mean time when taking public transportation? This is no joke thing. We have Doctors and nurses who will be risking their lives and their families to whom they go home to. How can the PM holding the highest office not see the importance of placing guidelines and having supervision that these guidelines are followed? Everywhere is currently fighting the same fight so we can’t get other countries to just jump to our aid. PM you failing Dominica!!

  10. I -Turn
    March 26, 2020

    Mr. Skerrit You keep coming to these briefings with some tasteless humor and after 11 confirmed cases you do not seem to grasp the gravity of what we’re grappling with, if not handled properly may cause Dominica to sink.

    Uncle if we can the politics aside. Everyone will agree that you in coplow with Corona. You squandered all de money so you left the gate open because country broke and you were trying to see what you collect. Right now we all under serious threat. Yet you stand there making fun of people in this time of grave crisis when this rapid spread of COVID19 is solely and completely your damn fault? History records that you were never able to handle crisis situations well.

    Most of the cases in the region were imported from the UK. Why didn’t you put mandatory quarantine for travelers from the UK as a precautionary measure? Bossman you have no foresight and still you listen to no one. You are such an arrogant, waste of time and wasteful spending Prime & Finance…

  11. Simple
    March 25, 2020

    So there is eleven and allu still refuse to lock down eh. But allu want it to get out of hand then..and just there playing bebel with it..the cry is that, to limit the spread just stop people from being out there that is y we were preparing ourselves for….the social distancing still aint working. My friend did his best to socual distance and the likes and he has tested positve…stop the spread, stay HOME. I doh understand y dis medical team tebey so..skerrit brainwash allu man..overseas telling allu to stay home to save lives and hear allu…wey wey wey…well i myself i home bound since on monday eh

  12. Spiritual Advisor
    March 25, 2020

    Skerrit must learn to accept criticism especially when he knows he deserves them. I mean Jesus was wrongly blamed by his friends as seen here ” … “Lord,” Martha said to Jesus, “if you had been here, my brother would not have died” Jhn 11:21-22. Jesus didn’t get angry he simply taught her a lesson. But Skerrit can’t take a bit of criticism and always thinks he has to attack people for calling him out as we saw today. PM, as a laborite myself I say if you had taken the necessary steps to protect our boarders we would not be dealing with 11 cases maybe more within 3days. It’s time you accept you are wrong and let’s move on. Blaming others for your mistake will not help us. Furthermore, according to you it’s time we put politics aside and work together to defeat the giant before us. PM, call Dr. Sam and Dr. Pascal and fix things and then bring them back to help our sick people. Call Linton and others and fix things so we could all fight this battle together. PM election is…

  13. The Gambler
    March 25, 2020

    I listened to the entire session and honestly it was a good session until the PM came and turned it into a political meeting. I don’t blame coronovirus on the PM but I blame him for doing too little too late. Before I go any further let me quote the PM of Grenada ” In announcing the measures, Mitchell stated that Grenada had so far registered no case of the coronavirus but he stressed that his government was “taking no chances said making no gambles on people’s lives”. That was on March 14, eleven days ago at which time Grenada hadn’t had a positive case of COVID-19. Somehow today Skerrit blaming people for his failure to take measures and said is because he followed PAHO and WHO 0-9 stages. I wonder if Mr. Mitchel followed a different plan to protect his people? Well Mr. Skerrit, we and Grenada announced our first case on the same day and to date we have 11 cases and Grenada has 3. PM failed us once again by failing to take timely decisions to protect us as seen with ERIKA & Maria

    Admin: Grenada now has 7 cases

  14. The Watchman
    March 25, 2020

    It was a good meeting until the FAILED Watchman took over with his usual politics of guilt, lies and playing defence without any offence. PM put nothing in place to defend the populace which is the only reason for 11 cases within 36 hrs. But here is God’s word to the failed watchman: ”
    ” But if the watchman sees the enemy coming and doesn’t sound the alarm to warn the people, he is responsible for their captivity. They will die in their sins, but I will hold the watchman responsible for their deaths” Ezekiel 33:6
    PM, you knew the enemy was hicoming, saw the enemy coming, was told the enemy was coming but YOU DIDN’T blow the trumpet, didn’t protect your boarders so God said the blood of the people is on you, the elected and selected watchman! You could blame Linton, the opposition, Letang, those that criticized you for not taking action, the truth is, God says the blood of the people is on you! So forget about those you don’t like and try to ensure that no one dies from…

  15. De-lie-lah or De Liar?
    March 25, 2020

    The press briefing turned political talk of Skerrit, lasted a total of 1hr 22 minutes. The first 25 minutes occupied by the three medical professionals were very informative, though I wish the friendly DLP press were allowed to ask questions just as we see in the US. But sadly, the political rally of PM Skerrit, which lasted almost 45min was empty, mapwee, division, lies hypocrisy and misleading. For example, he said those from Guada came on the boat last Friday were tested, followed by quarantine in Possie for 14 days. Let me say that it was a LIE! I have a family member on board and they were placed at the Lilacs hotel for 24 hrs and asked to leave. Secondly, pm needs to understand that if there was screening, quarantine and boarders closed , the same time St. Lucia and Grenada took steps to protect their boarders, it is clear that we would not have one single case in Dominica ,let alone 11. So the person pm referred to as ‘ Idiot’ was probably pointing his finger at the idiot

  16. A concerned Dominican
    March 25, 2020

    Is this 11 cases including the 4 probable or plus the 4 probable?

    Admin: No. They are in addition to the 11

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