Jamaica Observer:– MONTEGO BAY, St James — About 48 of the 377 nurses assigned to the Cornwall Regional Hospital are now in quarantine after being exposed to COVID-19 patients and suspected of contracting the respiratory disease while on duty at the facility.
“The 48 of the pool of nurses include registered and practical nurses. When you are looking after COVID patients and we suspect that you might be exposed to the disease then we will have to put you off work until we are sure that you are not infectious before you come back,” said Dr Delroy Fray, clinical coordinator at the Western Regional Health Authority (WRHA).
According to Dr Fray, it is customary to quarantine health-care workers who have been exposed and are suspected to have contracted a disease. He added that doctors have also been quarantined after being exposed to COVID-19 patients.
He said he did not know the number of doctors who were under quarantine, but added that he would have known if it were a significant number. He conceded that the 48 out-of-service nurses have forced the matron to “juggle” other nurses to fill the gap.
“So what that means is every shift the matron… has to adjust her roster to fit what needs to be done. So it’s a bit of a juggling. Sometimes we have to bring back nurses from leave, sometimes we have to move some from the clinic area to come over. So that type of juggling is required. So that is what is happening,” he said.
On Thursday, September 9, Jamaica recorded 638 new COVID-19 infections and eight deaths. The new cases moved the total number of infections to 74,645 since the first case was recorded last year, while the death toll climbed to 1,693.
Up to 11:00 am yesterday, Jamaica had administered some 613,962 doses of COVID-19 vaccines. Of that number, 460,083 were first doses, 141,518 were second doses and 12,361 were single doses.
On Thursday, Minister of Health and Wellness Dr Christopher Tufton told a press conference that the Mu variant of COVID-19 was now in Jamaica, noting that 26 of 90 samples tested confirmed the latest variant of the virus.