Bermuda marked the start of a new era of aggressive testing for COVID-19 on April 20 by testing 209 people across six different quarantine facilities.
It means Bermuda has now tested everyone who is currently in a government quarantine facility. David Burt, Bermuda’s Premier, called the achievement “an incredible feat.”
Those who tested negative will be able to leave the quarantine facility once they have completed their 14 days’ quarantine, but will remain under public health supervision and self-quarantine at home for a further 14 days. If they cannot self-quarantine at home they will be able to continue at the quarantine facility.
Those who tested positive will be required to quarantine at a government quarantine facility for an additional 14 days and will remain under active public health monitoring, including daily temperature checks and phone contact by a public health officer.
Bermuda processed an additional 42 test results on April 20, with none showing up as positive. It means Bermuda’s total COVID-19 case count remains at 86, 44 of which are active cases, with 11 of them being kept in hospital. Bermuda has seen five fatalities related to COVID-19.
The average age of confirmed positive cases is 55, with cases affecting people from ages 18 to 91. The age of people hospitalised ranges between 57 and 82.
The government has received 82 submissions from businesses wishing to reopen for business, of which 50 have been approved.
Meanwhile, Wayne Caines, Bermuda’s Minister of National Security, warned that the gradual opening up of businesses will mean longer lines at community check points, and called for patience as people wait to be checked.
Burt stressed that Bermudians face difficult times ahead. “With economists predicting that we face a global economic crisis unseen since the Great Depression, almost a century ago, we recognise that when we emerge from shelter in place together we will have to fight to work to build a Bermuda that works for everyone,” he said.
He pointed to Bermuda’s history for inspiration to help Bermudians cope. “Throughout our history Bermudians have adapted to the circumstances and challenges of the day,” he said. “Through hard work, sacrifice and a willingness to do things in a new way, we have done more than just survive. We have thrived.”
Burt added: “Imagine if Bermudians of 100 years ago had just laid down with the tobacco growing industry, shipbuilding industry, and onion agricultural business could no longer sustain us. Imagine if Bermudians of old had never been willing to pursue tourism, or welcome International Business to our shores. Where would we be without our historic and cultural willingness to recognise the times, know the times, and change with the times?”
David Burt, Wayne Caines, COVID-19