Jamaicans are being urged to increase their vigilance after the island recorded its highest number of COVID-19 cases in a day, with 328 new cases reported for February 5.
The numbers smash the previous daily record of 263 new cases, which was recorded just one day earlier, on February 4th.
The island’s daily positivity rate has increased to 15.7%, twice that of Miami-Dade’s, which has roughly the same size population as Jamaica. Active cases on the island are over 4,000.
The island’s Health and Wellness Minister, Dr. Christopher Tufton says the spike in cases is a cause for concern and reflects that there may be a complacency for the COVID-19 safety protocols.
“I implore every Jamaican to continue to take the necessary precautions to safeguard themselves from catching and spreading COVID-19. We cannot become complacent at this time, as we still have to protect ourselves and others, especially the members of the population who are considered vulnerable to severe outcomes from the disease,” said Dr. Tufton in a statement.
The new increase comes as stakeholders in the sports and entertainment industry push for more relaxed measures in Jamaica, including allowance for parties and other events to be held. The government stated last week that they would be examining how best these industries would be allowed to reopen.
In the meantime, Tufton said that virus is still a danger to the country, even as residents prepare to be vaccinated. The minister also noted that he expects the numbers to increase.
“COVID-19 is not over; it is still a clear and present danger, as we investigate these cases, we expect that our numbers may increase even further, therefore, we need to keep washing our hands frequently or using hand sanitiser, keeping a physical distance of six feet from others; wearing our masks; avoiding crowded situations, and adhering to all the measures outlined in the Disaster Risk Management Act,” Tufton added.