Two cases of COVID-19 identified in Bermuda

19-03-2020

Bermuda’s first cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed.

The cases both involve Bermuda residents that had both recently travelled from abroad. One arrived from the US on American Airlines Flight 308 on March 4, while the other came from the UK on British Airways flight 2233 on March 6.

Both fell ill three days after returning to the island, but the cases are otherwise unconnected. Neither case required hospitalisation, and both patients are now in isolation. 

David Burt, Bermuda’s Premier, insisted the Ministry of Health is working closely with other ministries across the government to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. This includes interviewing individuals close to the two patients, to identify and monitor other people who they came into contact with, to see if they become ill. These people are also currently self-quarantined. 

Burt said Bermuda will have the ability to screen people for COVID-19 on island on March 19. In the meantime he reiterated the advice that people should keep washing  their hands, avoid touching your own face and maintain social distancing. Anyone who starts displaying symptoms should immediately seek medical care, he added.  

Meanwhile, Bermuda will close its international airport for incoming passengers just before midnight on March 20 for two weeks. While the airport remains open only returning residents will be allowed to enter the country. The seaport has also been closed to visiting vessels, but essential cargo operations will continue to supply Bermuda.

Bermuda closed its schools from March 19 until at least April 6, while bars, restaurants, and other social establishments have been “strongly urged to scale down their operations.” 

A COVID-19 helpline has been established to provide support to those who may have concerns and questions about the disease. The phone number is 444 2498 and is available between 9AM and 9PM. 

David Burt, COVID-19

Bermuda Re