CMO And PS Of Health Thank General Public For Anguilla’s Relatively COVID-Free Status
Government’s press conference on Monday, June 28th, got underway with the Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Aisha Andrewin, and the Permanent Secretary of Health, Mr. Foster Rogers, addressing the conference after they had spent some time on leave.
In introducing them, the Honourable Acting Premier, Mr. Haydn Hughes, said: “We are privileged and honoured to have the health team with us again. Mr. Rogers is back from a much needed short vacation. He and Dr. Andrewin will give us an update as to where we are in terms of health.”
Dr. Andrewin stated: “For a global view, with regard to the pandemic, the WHO noted that in some areas there was an apparent decline in Covid-19 cases, hospitalisations and deaths. However, due the emergence of certain new variants, they detected an increase in cases particularly among unvaccinated persons. The Americas and the Caribbean are two of the areas where WHO has noticed an increase in cases. In our neighbouring territories, at the moment, cases continue to rise and, of course, WHO advocates that vaccination is the best way out.”
“In Anguilla,” Dr. Andrewin observed, “we have been fortunate that since our cluster we have not had any cases. We cleared the cluster a few weeks ago — with our last active case being on May 10th. For over a month, now, Anguilla has had no cases of Covid-19.
“On June 4th the CDC reclassified Anguilla at the lowest level of risks. Then, a few days later, PAHO and WHO reclassified us as zero cases. This is quite remarkable. Then, last week Thursday the UK has put us back on the green list of countries — which is the lowest risk category. We are grateful.”
The CMO went on: “We at the Ministry of Health would like to express our gratitude to the public. We had always known that such accomplishments could not be achieved without the participation and the compliance of the general public. We kept saying that. We have seen tangible results only because our people were willing to cooperate and comply with the measures that were implemented.”
“These reclassifications by CDC, PAHO, WHO and the UK came in record time,” Dr. Andrewin noted, “and the Ministry could not have done it without the compliance of the general public. And because of the way the public reacted, we are now very much on track to reach our milestones, although we still have certain challenges.”
Mr. Rogers echoed Dr. Andrewin’s sentiments by saying: “I too would like to associate myself with the comments made by the Chief Medical Officer. We certainly could not be at this position without the input and cooperation of the general public. I wish to particularly thank Anguillians and residents who, during the cluster, performed extremely well.”
He went on: “Because of this kind of compliance, we were able to limit our movements, and get our testing done adequately. We did almost 2,000 tests in record time. We had to cast a very wide net, and we were able to ensure that we declared [negative or positive for Covid-19] as many persons as possible. It was phenomenal that four weeks later, on May 29th, we are able to begin the opening process.
“We are now at another stage of that opening. Looking back, we have gone though a couple incubation periods without any evidence of the virus being in Anguilla. So I wish, by all means, to say thanks to the general public for their cooperation.