As Coronavirus continues to spread around the world, we provide you with information on the latest local developments as well as a guide on how to protect yourselves and your family from Coronavirus in Cayman.
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Although unconfirmed, Coronavirus (COVID-19) is thought to have emerged from illegally-traded wildlife at the Wuhan South China Seafood Market (China), with the first case being reported in December 2019. At the time of publication, there is no vaccine available and treatment is supportive care based on the patient’s symptoms.
On this page you will find detailed information and updates on the current Government restrictions, current travel restrictions and much more.
OCTOBER 2020 UPDATES: For the latest updates on travel restrictions and tips on entering the Cayman Islands during the pandemic, please see this page.
It is mandatory for any residents returning home on an emergency travel flight to isolate for a minimum period of 16 days, with testing conducted on the 15th day. There are many new options for at-home or private isolation that have been announced with the soft border reopening in October 2020. Government-run facilities previously included The Wyndham Reef Resort, Holiday Inn and Comfort Suites. Now, if you choose to isolate in a private facility, or if you are not eligible to use a government-run facility, there are more options available in Palm Heights, The Ritz-Carlton, Sunshine Suites, St. Matthew’s Hall and St. Matthew’s Residence. These new additions have all created brochures so that you are aware of the prerequisites such as prices, amenities, and sanitation measures. You can view brochures for each of these residences by clicking on their names.
As many countries globally have also implemented travel restrictions, it is important to get in contact with your consulate to confirm your country's specific restrictions. The daily Government press conferences which update on the latest COVID-19 news specific to Cayman cover upcoming emergency evacuation charters and the Cayman Islands Government has a COVID-19 FAQs page that is updated regularly with local coronavirus-related news and policies in action.
Current Government Restrictions: COVID-19 Suppression Levels (20th October 2020)
Regulations have been put forth under the Public Health Law (2002 Revision) for the prevention, control and suppression of COVID-19 in the Cayman Islands. Five levels, ranging from Maximum Suppression (Level 5) to the All Clear (Level 1), offer guidance for rules and regulations that are to be followed across the Cayman Islands.
At all levels, persons are expected to practice physical distancing, maintain good hand hygiene, wear masks/face coverings indoors certain public spaces, as well as follow any regulation issued under the Public Health Law and in accordance with Section 49 of the Police Law.
All three Islands are currently operating under Minimal Suppression, Level 2. The latest COVID-19 suppression measures are summarised below:
Public Gathering Restrictions:
- Up to 500 people now allowed to gather in public
- Use of hookah, shisha pipes or water pipes remain prohibited
- Up to 500 people can now attend weddings in addition to the bride, groom, official witnesses and the marriage officer
- Up to 500 people can now attend funerals in addition to the six pallbearers and essential mortuary staff and officiants
- You can now visit residential care home facilities, such as The Pines, with a negative PCR test within three days of visiting
- Persons wishing to visit a detainee in a prison or place of detention must be tested within three days of visiting and be declared negative
- Contact sports are permitted. There can be no more than 500 persons permitted at any time as spectators or as participants of the relevant sport
- Persons renting any shared scuba or snorkelling equipment must register with the Department of Environmental Health
- Commercial boats can now carry up to their licensed capacity, not exceeding 500 people
- Gatherings of boats will be able to take place with up to 500 people
- Students are not required to wear masks or physically distance, however physical contact is strongly discouraged and the wearing of masks is optional
- Masks/face coverings must be worn on the school bus to/from school
Public Health Protocols:
- Maintaining a 3ft distance from persons outside of your household in public spaces wherever possible
- Persons are not required to wear a face mask/covering indoors at certain public spaces
- Masks/face coverings must be worn on public transport (taxi and school bus/omnibus)
- Testing is ongoing
Travel between the Islands:
- Travel will be permitted between islands for pleasure by air and boat
- Travel between Cayman’s three Islands can now be done without a PCR test providing travellers have been in Cayman for more than two weeks
- Persons wishing to travel between the Islands and who has not been in the Islands for at least fourteen days prior to the date of travel should seek the approval of the Chief Officer of the Ministry of International Trade, Investment, Aviation and Maritime Affairs 48 hours prior to travelling; and be tested for the virus and be declared to be negative
Persons are still expected to practice physical distancing and maintain good hand hygiene, as well as follow any regulation issued under the Public Health Law and in accordance with Section 49 of the Police Law.
For a detailed breakdown of the rules and regulations for Minimal Suppression, Level 2, please click here.
Latest COVID-19 Update for Cayman
(November 16, 2020) Cayman's second COVID-19 related death has been confirmed. The patient contracted the virus while traveling and was admitted to the Cayman Islands hospital after a worsening of symptoms on the 4th of October 2020 and passed away on November 15th. The patient fell within the category of people considered to be high-risk.
(September 9, 2020-Press Conference) The Chief Medical Officer, Dr John Lee, reports 86 COVID-19 tests carried out since yesterday - of which two were positive. These results are from travellers arriving in Cayman. Dr John Lee also stated that a positive case was picked up during a screening test 10 days ago from the community, which on further confirmatory testing as recommended by Public Health England returned negative results. However the person and their contacts were isolated in the interests of caution and have subsequently had a negative test several days later.
(August 25, 2020- Press Conference) The Governor has confirmed fortnightly commercial British Airways flights to/from the Heathrow Airport in London starting 17th September (LHR-GCM) and 18th September (GCM-LHR). There will be regular flights every two weeks thereafter. These flights can be booked directly through BA, but you will need permission from CI Boarder Control to travel TO Cayman, for this you must apply with TravelCayman.
(August 19, 2020) The Chief Medical Officer, Dr John Lee, reports 183 COVID-19 tests carried out today - of which two were positive. These results are from two separate travellers arriving in Cayman on different flights. They have been in isolation since they have arrived and will remain in isolation with their travelling parties until they have completed the necessary additional period of isolation.
(August 14, 2020) The Health Services Authority has now launched a new online booking system for COVID-19 testing. COVID-19 screening is currently available to all members of the public and testing is free. No walk-ins allowed and appointments must be made two business days in advance. Appointment times are available between 7.30am-8.20am Monday-Friday. Test results will be available within 24 hours via email.
(August 13, 2020) Cayman Airways Limited (CAL) has confirmed additional repatriation flights for travel from Grand Cayman to La Ceiba, Kingston, and Miami.
- La Ceiba, Honduras: August 21, 2020 and September 23, 2020
- Kingston, Jamaica: September 2, 2020 and September 30, 2020
- Miami, Florida: September 1, 2020 and September 22, 2020
Acting Port Authority Director Joseph Woods has also confirmed that the Cayman Islands government will be extending its ban on cruise ships until the 31st December, 2020.
(August 7, 2020) The Cayman Islands government has extended Cayman's border closure to October 1, 2020, due to the continuing global spread of COVID-19.
(July 24, 2020) Although the air and sea ports remain closed, persons wishing to leave the Cayman Islands on Cayman Airways or charter aircraft can now make travel arrangements directly with the carrier. Tickets for Cayman Airways flights can be purchased online at www.caymanairways.com or by calling Cayman Airways Reservations on (345) 949 2311 or 1 (800) 422 9626 (toll free in the USA) between 9am and 6pm weekdays. Only credit or debit cards will be taken over the phone for bookings.
Those wishing to travel to the Cayman Islands or on the British Airways air bridge are still required to register with TravelTime. Persons returning to Cayman must isolate in a mandatory government managed facility for 14 days.
(July 17, 2020- Press Conference) There are no additional positive cases to report today, bringing the total number of cases for the Cayman Islands, since the report, to 203.
Upcoming repatriation flights over the next month include: 3 flights to Jamaica, scheduled for the 22nd of July, 12th of August and 2nd September and 8 round trip flights to Miami, scheduled for the 24th of July (2 flights), the 3rd, 14th (2 flights) and 24th of August and the 14th (2 flights) of September.
The Deputy Premier and Tourism Minister, Moses Kirkconnell, announced that Cayman’s borders will reopen to international travel starting on September 1st, 2020. Potential passengers/visitors must take a COVID-19 test 72 hours before departing and declared negative. Arriving visitors will receive a health monitoring device upon arriving in the Cayman Islands. After clearing immigration and customs, they will then be taken to a monitored self isolation for five days.
(July 13, 2020) Among 552 COVID-19 tests carried out since Friday, two have came back positive. One is a returning traveller currently in isolation and the other is presumed to been acquired locally.
(July 3, 2020– Press Conference) There are no additional positive cases to report today, bringing the total number of cases for the Cayman Islands, since the last press conference, to 201.
Part 2 of 'Level 2' commences Sunday, 5th July, bringing additional easing of restrictions. These include:
- Reopening of educational institutions, including summer camps
- Restaurants and bar services can recommence indoor dining services
- Persons can now exercise inside strata and public gyms
The UK government announces no need for students returning to the UK from Overseas British Territories to quarantine upon arrival.
Upcoming repatriation flights over the next month include: 3 flights to Jamaica, scheduled for the 4th, 9th and 11th of July. 2 flights to Miami on the 8th and 10th of July and 1 fight to London on the 31st of July. More details to come.
(June 30, 2020– Press Conference) There is one additional positive case to report today, bringing the total number
of cases for the Cayman Islands, since the last press conference, to 200.
The Reopening of Borders Committee had their first meeting today, where work is now underway for the safe reopening of the Island's borders.
British Airways flights for the end of July and August for returning students are being arranged. More details to come.
(June 26, 2020– Press Conference) There are no additional positive cases to report today, bringing the total number
of cases for the Cayman Islands, since the last press conference, to 196.
Anyone who wishes to register for COVID-19 screening by the HSA can do so by visiting www.exploregov.ky/coronavirus and clicking on 'Register for Screening' on the left hand side.
A Reopening of Borders Committee (RBC) has been established to organise the logistics and operations for reopening Cayman's borders to the rest of the world. Comprising of ten government agencies, the committee will be tasked with formulating policies in line with risk assessment for the reopening of the country.
(June 23, 2020– Press Conference) There are no additional positive cases to report today, keeping the total number of cases for the Cayman Islands, since the last press conference, to 195.
The 'curfew time' team, led by Chief Officer Eric Bush, will now offer services from the 1st of July to assist with coordinating the return of Caymanians, Permanent Residents and Work Permit holders to the Cayman Islands. They will also manage the government isolation facilities and help with the repatriation of those looking to return to their homeland from the Cayman Islands.
The Deputy Governor announced the implementation of improved online payment and customer capabilities for certain government services, including applications for British Overseas Territory citizenship, Naturalization, and expungement of criminal recordsl. Customers will be able to pay fees for these services at the post offices. More information will be revealed in a press release shortly.
Minister of Commerce Joey Hew announced the introduction of a population register and national ID system which is expected to begin its roll out in the fourth quarter of this year.
(June 19, 2020– Press Conference) There are two additional positive cases to report today, bringing the total number of cases for the Cayman Islands, since the last press conference, to 195.
Tickets for the Emergency Evacuation Charter to India will be available for purchase 22 June. Those who have registered with the Governor's Office will be given information on how to purchase first. Only those with an Indian passport or an Overseas Citizen of India card can get a seat. Air bridge flights to the UK have been arranged for 31st July and 28th August, primarily for the benefit of returning students. Students needing to return to the US for university in the fall should register at www.exploregov.ky/travel, and can expect to be contacted directly with details.
The period for self-isolation of COVID-19 positive cases has been reduced to 10 days for asymptomatic cases, and at least 10 for symptomatic cases (all positive cases still need to produce 2 negative tests within 48 hours of each other to be deemed recovered).
(June 17, 2020– Press Conference) There are no positive cases to report today, leaving the total number of cases for the Cayman Islands, since the last press conference, at 193.
Additional relaxations on restrictions as Grand Cayman moves into phase 2 of the Government's COVID-19 response have been released and the highlights are as follows:
Effective 21st June:
- The hard curfew will be lifted from 4.30am 21st June and the 'alphabet system' on surnames restricting travel based on days of the week will no longer apply
- Helpers and cleaners can resume work
- Groups of up to 25 will be permitted to gather at any one time
- Salons and spas can reopen
- Restaurants can return to full operational hours and there will no longer be a restriction on the amount of diners at a table. Tables must still remain 8ft apart
- Scuba diving and snorkelling is allowed however equipment cannot be rented to do so
- Boating for an purpose is allowed with up to 10 persons per boat however boaters are not permitted to anchor/congregate within restricted areas (Rum Point, Starfish Point, Stingray City or the Sand Bar)
Effective 5th July:
- Summer programmes, vacation bible schools, etc can commence
- Indoor dining returns however tables must remain 6ft apart
- Gyms (public and strata) can reopen
- Persons can travel to the Sister Islands without entering quarantine in a government facility AFTER notifying the Medical Officer of Health, getting tested for and receiving a negative COVID result and then being transferred directly to the airport.
Effective 19th July:
- Nightclubs can resume business
- Contact sports will be permitted
- All restrictions on boats will be lifted
Despite the lifting of many restrictions across the Island, the public is still expected to adhere to social distancing rules and the wearing of masks in public spaces is still mandatory. For more information and a full breakdown of what is to be expected during phase 2 of the Government's COVID response, please visit www.exploregov.ky/coronavirus.
(June 12, 2020– Press Conference) There is one additional positive case to report today, bringing the total number of cases for the Cayman Islands, since the last press conference, to 187.
(June 9, 2020– Press Conference) There are five additional positive cases to report today, bringing the total number of cases for the Cayman Islands, since the last press conference, to 176.
Two Emergency Evacuation Charters to Jamaica have been arranged for 10th June and 12th June. The Jamaican Consulate of the Cayman Islands has determined the passenger list.
(June 5, 2020– Press Conference) There are four additional positive cases to report today, bringing the total number of cases for the Cayman Islands, since the last press conference, to 164.
Caymanians who were employed within the Island's tourism industry and have since been laid off can apply for monetary assistance from the Government. The deadline for applying is 11.59pm 7th June. Persons can register here.
With the reopening of restaurants to the public scheduled for this Sunday, the 7th June, the Premier reminded of the importance of maintaining social distancing. Some things to bear in mind include: maintaining a 6ft distance with people not from your household, wearing masks when not sat at your table, maintaining distance in bathrooms, seated bar areas remain prohibited.
Emergency Evacuation Charters have been arranged for Ecuador/Mexico on 8th June and Canada on 13th July. Further details to come.
(June 2, 2020– Press Conference) There is one additional positive case to report today, bringing the total number of cases for the Cayman Islands, since the last press conference, to 151.
The 'air bridge' back to the UK on the 12th of June is now full. Of the emergency evacuation charters organized to Miami for June 2020, there remains spaces on the 5th of June flight.
(May 29, 2020– Press Conference) There is one additional positive case to report today, bringing the total number of cases for the Cayman Islands, since the last press conference, to 141.
Amended 'Shelter in Place' regulations have been announced today, to come into effect on Monday, 1st June 2020. They are as follows:
From Monday, 1st June:
- Between 1st June-7th June, the nightly hard curfew hours are between 8pm-4.30am.
- Construction, retail and real estate businesses can resume operation
- All public exercises spaces reopen, including government owned tracks
- Non-contact open air sports can resume
From Sunday, 7th June:
- From 7th June, the nightly hard curfew hours change to 10pm-4.30am.
- Groups of no more than 6 persons are permitted to gather together
- All persons can visit the beach on any day of the week regardless of last name
- Boating restrictions loosened to allow for leisure boating with no more than 6 persons on board. Boats cannot anchor at Rum Point, Starfish Point, Stingray City or the Sand Bar
- Restaurants can reopen for outdoor seating under the following conditions: No more than 6 persons to be seated at the same table, tables must be situated 8ft apart, no persons are permitted to be sat at an indoor counter/bar
- Exercise is permitted during the hours of 4.45am-9pm
- Essential services are still operating under the alphabet system
The next 'air bridge' flight to the UK will depart on 12th June and those persons registered for a spot will be contacted directly by the Governor's Office.
Several Emergency Evacuation Charters to Miami are scheduled for the 5th and 26th June and the 3rd July. To purchase tickets contact Cayman Airways directly on (345) 949 2311.
(May 27, 2020– Press Conference) There are 3 additional positive cases to report today, bringing the total number of cases for the Cayman Islands, since the last press conference, to 140. Of these, 72 are active.
An Emergency Evacuation Charter to India has been confirmed for sometime in the next three weeks. Further details to be given. Details for an 'air bridge' to the UK during the first half of June are still being finalized, while discussions for repatriation flights to Jamaica, Colombia and Canada are still underway.
The local fish market on the George Town waterfront has reopened and persons can visit on their 'letter day'. As always, masks and social distancing requirements apply.
(May 25, 2020– Press Conference) There are 5 positive cases to report today, bringing the total number of cases for the Cayman Islands, since the last press conference, to 134.
An Emergency Evacuation Charter to India is being arranged and further details will be given.
(May 22, 2020– Press Conference) There are 8 positive cases to report today, bringing the total number of cases for the Cayman Islands, since the last press conference, to 129.
International mail service to the United States through the Cayman Islands Postal Services has resumed, however there is still no incoming mail to the Island.
Water Authority will NOT be increasing their annual rates and are waiving late fee penalties for all customers for May 2020. Any persons now unemployed or with reduced income as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic can apply to the Authority's payment deferral programme. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Caymanians and Permanent Residents wishing to book onto future 'air bridge' flights from the UK can register with the Cayman Islands Government UK Office at +44 (0) 207 491 7772 or email@example.com.
Emergency evacuation charters to Miami are scheduled for the 29th of May and the 5th and 15th of June. To book onto these flights, visit www.caymanairways.com or call (345) 949 2311.
Non-Caymanians and Work Permit Holders wishing to return to the Cayman Islands will need to register at www.exploregov.ky/travel or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. Requests are subject to review by the Office of the Deputy Premier under the following considerations:
- Their place of work has resumed business and physical presence is required.
- The employee has an active work permit with sufficient time remaining and the employer has complied with all explicit business obligations.
- Availability of inward flights.
- The employee has demonstrated that they can cover costs associated, including the isolation stay at a government mandated facility.
(May 19, 2020– Press Conference) There are 17 additional positive case to report today, bringing the total number of cases for the Cayman Islands, since the last press conference, to 111. Two of these were reported in Cayman Brac.
Work Permit holders who are returning to the Cayman Islands are expected to cover the costs of quarantine in the government isolation facilities. The preliminary cost is CI$2,600 and includes meals for the duration of the 14 day minimum stay. If the quarantine period is extended, additional charges will apply.
There is no press conference scheduled for tomorrow (20th May) as the Legislative Assembly will meet to discuss proposed legislation for the Island's financial services industry.
(May 15, 2020– Press Conference) There is one additional positive case to report today, bringing the total number of cases for the Cayman Islands, since the last press conference, to 94. Today's case has been linked to a previously reported positive.
New 'Shelter In Place' regulations will take effect on 19th, May 2020 and remain in effect until 5am 2nd June, 2020. These are as follows:
- The 24-hr hard curfew on Sundays has been lifted.
- Allowed exercise time has increased to 2 hours per day, and persons are now permitted to drive to their place of exercise.
- Beaches will reopen to the public at 5am on Tuesday, 19th May for exercise only. Persons may only visit the beach on their prescribed 'letter day' and exercise on the beach is limited to: swimming, snorkelling, fishing from the shoreline, paddleboarding, kayaking. No social gatherings of any kind are permitted and groups are restricted to no more than 2 persons. Beaches remain closed to the public for Sundays.
- Fishing in a boat between the hours of 5.15am-7pm is now permitted however no more than 2 persons are allowed on a boat at a time and no leisure trips are permitted.
- Public transportation is permitted however the following conditions apply: public transport vehicles cannot exceed 50% carrying capacity and all persons on-board much wear masks at all times.
- Strata pools and tennis courts can reopen however social distancing of 6ft is enforced and no more than 2 persons at a time can congregate UNLESS all persons are living in the same household.
- Masks are a requirement upon law when entering any enclosed public space and entry may be denied for anyone not wearing a mask.
An Emergency Evacuation Charter to the Philippines has been confirmed for 23rd May 2020. Tickets are US$1,850 and details on purchase will later be announced.
(May 13, 2020– Press Conference) There is one additional positive case to report today, bringing the total number of cases for the Cayman Islands to 86. This case has been linked to community spread.
The Premier indicated today that a relaxing of certain restrictions will be outlined in Friday's (15/05) briefing as the Cayman Islands move into the next phase of the Shelter-In-Place regulations.
The Department of Health Regulatory Services is offering assistance to those in need of help covering their health insurance premiums. Visit www.dhrs.gov.ky for more information.
(May 11, 2020– Press Conference) There are three additional positive cases to report today, bringing the total number of cases for the Cayman Islands to 83. One case has been directly linked to a previous positive and the other two are still being investigated.
Unless urgent, there will be no press conferences held on Tuesday (12/05) or Thursday (14/05) of this week.
(May 8, 2020– Press Conference) One additional positive case has been reported today, bringing the total number of cases for the Cayman Islands to 81.
The Emergency Evacuation Charter to Miami has been confirmed for 15th May, 2020. Tickets can be purchased by calling (345) 949 2311 or by visiting: www.caymanairways.com. This flight will be allowing a limited number of Caymanians and Permanent Residents on the return flight. To purchase tickets, call (345) 949 2311 or 1 800 GCAYMAN.
To purchased tickets for the Emergency Evacuation Charter to Dominican Republic scheduled for the 17th May, call (345) 949 2311.
There will be no press conference tomorrow (08/05/2020) or Sunday (09/05/2020). The press conference will return for regular scheduling on Monday. (10/05/2020).
(May 7, 2020– Press Conference) An additional 2 positive cases have been reported today, bringing the total number of cases for the Cayman Islands to 80. One person had a travel history and one had direct contact to a previously confirmed positive case.
Cabinet has approved changes to the Shelter in Place provisions for Cayman Brac, including:
- Nightly hard curfew from 8pm-5am
- No more 24-hour curfew on Sundays
- The alphabetical restriction on travel has been lifted
- All water activities are now permitted
- Businesses must limit the amount of persons allowed within establishments at any given time
- Masks are mandatory for indoor public spaces
The Emergency Evacuation Charter to the Dominican Republic has been confirmed for the 17th of May and details for ticket purchase will be announced tomorrow.
An official decision from Cabinet has been made for the closure of airports and seaports until 1st September 2020.
(May 6, 2020– Press Conference) There are no new positive results to report today.
An Emergency Evacuation Charter to the Dominican Republic which will depart within the next ten days has been confirmed. More details to come. A charter to Miami has also been confirmed with further details to be released in the coming days. Discussions for charters to Jamaica, India and the Philippines are still underway.
(May 5, 2020– Press Conference) An additional 3 positive cases have been reported today, bringing the total number of cases for the Cayman Islands to 78, of which 47 are active cases, 30 are recovered and 1 is deceased.
As of tomorrow (06/05/2020), the nightly hard curfew for Little Cayman will be lifted, and there is a relaxing of restrictions on the Shelter in Place regulations, including:
- Required social distancing of 6ft at all times in public spaces
- Businesses must limit the amount of persons allowed within establishments at any given time
- Masks are mandatory in public spaces
(May 4, 2020– Press Conference) As of today, there have been an additional 600 negative results and 1 new positive result which has been linked to a previously tested positive.
Businesses that fall under those deemed essential should still apply for a formal exemption letter from the Competent Authority here.
Cabinet will meet to consider an Order later this week mandating border closure until 1st September 2020.
(May 1, 2020– Press Conference) An additional 392 results have been released today, of which 1 is positive and has been the result of community spread.
On Monday, 4th May 2020 at 5am new curfew regulations will take effect and they are as follows:
- Monday-Saturday 5am-8pm a soft curfew is in effect and the 'Shelter in Place' orders stand.
- Monday-Saturday 8pm-5pm a hard curfew is in effect.
- 24 Hour hard curfew remains in effect every Sunday.
- Exercise hours are extended to be between 5.15am-7pm.
- Beaches remain closed.
The new regulations also enable banks to extend operational hours to 9am-4pm and a number of businesses can now reopen for DELIVERY in accordance with the latest 'Shelter-in-Place' regulations. For specific details on which businesses the latest regulations effect, please see the Prevention, Control and Suppression of COVID-19 Regulations, 2020.
The Emergency Evacuation Charter to Costa Rica has been confirmed for 8th May 2020 and those wishing to purchase a ticket can contact Cayman Airways at 949 2311. Tickets are US$515.
The Ministry of Culture are offering a one-time stipend of CI$1000 to local musicians. For further details email email@example.com or call (345) 936 2369.
There will not be any press conferences held over the weekend.
(April 30, 2020– Press Conference) Today's press conference has been postponed until tomorrow (1/5/2020) as new 'Shelter in Place' regulations are still being finalised.
(April 29, 2020– Press Conference) An additional 200 results have been released today, all of which are negative.
International Mail Services will not resume today as procedures are still being worked out.
The Traffic Law amendments came into effect today and those persons with registrations or inspection certificates that have expired or will expire during the period of 1st February-30th June 2020 can now renew their registration on the DVDL website for an additional 6 months without an inspection certificate.
Money Transfer services will resume operations on 4th May, 2020 once official approval from the Competent Authority has been granted. These services will operate from Mon-Sat 6am-6pm under the usual last name alphabet system.
An Emergency Evacuation Charter to Honduras has been confirmed for 8th May, 2020. Tickets can be purchased by contacting the Cayman Airways Reservations Department on (345) 949 2311. An Emergency Charter to Canada has also been confirmed for 22nd May, 2020. To purchase tickets contact: firstname.lastname@example.org or call (345) 517 0628. Further details for a confirmed Emergency Evacuation Charter to Costa Rica will be announced and Costa Rican citizens should register with the Emergency Travel unit for ticket info.
(April 28, 2020– Press Conference) An additional 187 results have been released today, of which 3 are positive. Through contact tracing it has been determined that 1 is related to a previous positive case, 1 is the result of community transmission and 1 is still being investigated for a direct link.
The Department of Commerce & Investment (DCI) has begun reaching out to businesses that qualify for the COVID-19 screening programme.
The Emergency Evacuation Charter to Honduras is now sold out and a second charter is being arranged.
(April 27, 2020– Press Conference) An additional 208 results have been released today, all of which are negative.
The Cayman Islands Postal Services will reopen the following branches with limited services on 29th April, 2020: Airport Post Office (Grand Cayman), West End Post Office (Cayman Brac) and Little Cayman Post Office (Little Cayman). They will be open every Wednesday and Thursday from 9am-1pm and you can only visit on your set day as dictated by the first letter of your last name.
An Emergency Evacuation Charter to La Ceiba, Honduras has been confirmed early next week. More details to come. The chartered flight to Mexico City, Mexico has been rescheduled for 1st May, 2020 and the details for flights to Costa Rica and Dominican Republic are currently being worked out.
(April 24, 2020– Press Conference) An additional 154 results have been released today: 4 of which were positive. Two of these cases were connected to previous positive cases and two are the result of community spread. That brings the new total number of positive cases in the Cayman Islands to 70.
All proposed amendments to the relevant laws were passed yesterday (23/04/2020) by the Legislative Assembly. Details and how these changes may affect you can be found here.
An Emergency Evacuation Charter to Cancun, Mexico is being planned for next week. More details will be released on Monday and those interested in purchasing a ticket should email: email@example.com.
There will be no press conference on Saturday (25/04/2020) or Sunday (26/04/2020). The press conference will resume as usual on Monday (27/04/2020).
(April 22, 2020– Press Conference) There are no new positive COVID-19 results to report today.
An emergency evacuation charter to Miami has been scheduled for the 1st of May at 10.30am. Tickets can be purchased for CI$180 and any persons wishing to get on this flight should contact the Cayman Airways' Reservation Department directly on (345) 949 2311. The 'air bridge' to the UK will depart on April 29th at 6.05pm and tickets are CI$750. To purchase tickets please visit: https://www.otairbridge.com/tr...
There will be no press conference tomorrow (23/04/2020) due to the meeting of the Legislative assembly. The press conference will resume as usual on Friday (24/04/2020).
(April 21, 2020– Press Conference) There are no new positive COVID-19 results to report today.
Persons who have registered for the 'air-bridge' flight to the UK will be provided with a website link for ticket purchase. The general public can access the link starting tomorrow.
Relating to pension withdrawals - pension providers are required to review an application within seven days of receipt and are permitted up to 45 days to release the funds withdrawn.
(April 20, 2020– Press Conference) An additional 76 results have been released today: 71 of which are negative, and 5 of which are positive. 4 of these positives are cases of community transmission and 1 is in connection to someone who has already tested positive. That brings the total positive cases in Cayman to 66.
The newest Traffic Amendment Bill 2020 will provide that in a time where there has been a natural disease or outbreak of infectious disease, cabinet will be able to grant extensions for the various periods for compliance with or exemption from any provision of the traffic law or regulations.
Under proposed new legislation, residents will now be able to withdraw a lump sum of $10,000 from their pension funds and from there an additional 25% of the balance. There will also be a six-month payment holiday on pension contribution from 1st April, retroactively. These amendments only apply to private sector pension funds and are in place until November 2020.
The HSA will be testing hundreds of front-line health care workers starting this week.
(April 17, 2020– Press Conference) A further 12 test results were shared today, all of which were negative.
Nicaragua's border closure, the two emergency evacuation charters from
Cayman to Nicaragua that were scheduled to depart tomorrow (17/04/2020)
have been cancelled. Any work permit holders that this has effected who
require assistance should contact (345) 244 8000. Cayman Airways will be
in touch with passengers regarding refunds. The emergency evacuation
charter to Canada scheduled for Monday, 20th April, is confirmed and
another 'air bridge' British Airways flight to the UK is being arranged
and will be organized for the week of the 27th of April.
In addition to the NAU's main telephone numbers and contact details, persons can now contact the office on the following numbers based on their last name and day in line with Regulations: A-K: (345) 936 0628, (345) 936 1628, (345) 936 2628. L-Z: (345) 936 3628, (345) 936 4628.
There will be no press briefing held over the weekend - the next briefing is scheduled for Monday, 20th April.
(April 16, 2020– Press Conference) An additional 54 results have been released today: 53 of which are negative, and 1 of which was found to be positive, in relation to a person who has previously tested positive. That brings the total positive cases to 61.
Island-wide soft and hard curfews have been extended from Friday, 17th, April 2020 until Friday, 1st, May 2020. A 24-hour hard curfew remains on Sundays during this period (19th April and 26th April) and ALL public beaches remain under a full 24-hour lock-down between the 17th, April till 5am 1st, May. Exercise in public spaces will now be permitted from 5.15am until 6.45pm, Mon-Sat. However you are no longer permitted to drive to your place of exercise.
Government has instructed the Cayman Islands Development Bank to allow a three month loan payment holiday.
Any Canadians wishing to be considered for the flights being organised by the Canadian government, should register through the Registration of Canadians Abroad.
Masks will be distributed in the coming weeks across the country by constituency. More details to come.
(April 15, 2020– Press Conference) There are 6 more positive cases to report today, 4 of whom are connected to contacts already infected and 2 of whom have been locally contracted. This takes the total number of people who have tested positive for the Cornavirus to 60.
Evacuation flights to and from the Island have been confirmed: One World Atlantic Airlines flight scheduled for Friday (17th, April 2020) will bring around 100 residents back to the Island from Miami and a separate Cayman Airways flight will fly out Work Permit holders to Miami on the same day. The flight will return empty. An additional 160 people will be evacuated to Nicaragua. Flights to Canada will be arranged in the coming week and discussions continue over arranging flights to Honduras, the Dominican Republic and Jamaica.
(April 14, 2020– Press Conference) There are no new COVID-19 results to report today. Persons in the Cayman Islands wishing to evacuate to their home country can contact the Emergency Travel Hotline on (345) 244-3333 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
(April 13, 2020– Press Conference) An additional 44 persons have been tested for COVID-19 at the HSA Laboratory, of which 1 was found to be positive. This person had recently traveled.
Four of the ventilators that were released by the US Customs have now arrived on-Island. Four more are still being shipped.
A full 24-hr lock-down of all public beaches across the Cayman Islands is in place from today (Monday, 13th of April) until 5am on Friday, 17th of April. Activity of any kind is strictly prohibited and a breach of the hard curfew order is a criminal offense which carries a penalty of CI$3000 and/or imprisonment of one year. Note: Private property owners with direct beach access are not permitted beyond the high water mark.
(April 11, 2020– Press Conference) An additional 56 persons have been tested for COVID-19 at the HSA Laboratory, of which 8 were found to be positive. Two are related to persons that have previously tested positive. The remaining six are currently being contact traced by health officials.
In response to reports of large numbers of persons and high levels of activity witnessed along Seven Mile Beach, all public beaches will be CLOSED on Public Holiday Monday (13/04/2020). Pending further discussion with the Cabinet, this closure may extend beyond Monday. Note: If your property is on the beach, you will still be permitted to use the beach directly in front of your property.
A National Recovery Fund with an initial deposit of CI$1 million has been created by Ken Dart and additionally any funds raised and deposited from the private sector will be matched by Mr. Dart up to CI$4 million. The fund will provide assistance for: Personal protective equipment, individuals in distress, immediate economic needs and long term economic needs.
It is likely another air-bridge between Grand Cayman and the UK will be organised in the next week or so. Further details to come.
There will be no press conference tomorrow (12/04/2020) as the Island recognizes Easter Sunday. The usual hard curfew still applies. Those who fail to comply with the hard curfew are guilty of an offense and will be fined up to $3,000 and face one year imprisonment.
(April 9, 2020– Press Conference) The test kits received from South Korea have passed validation tests. The confiscated shipment of medical supplies have now been released by the US Customs and Border Control and are due to arrive on-Island early next week.
The HSA is recruiting for registered nurses and cleaning staff on a temporary basis. Please reach out to the HSA directly at email@example.com or visit hsa.ky for more information.
There are currently 65 results still pending with no new results to report today.
There will be no press conference tomorrow (10/04/2020) as the Island recognizes Good Friday. While there is no hard curfew in place for Good Friday, you must regard the rules under Sunday trading law with respect to businesses which can operate.
(April 8, 2020– Press Conference) 165,000 test kits arrived on Island this morning from South Korea meaning that the HSA laboratory will soon be able to do around 500 tests a day. The US government has confiscated medical supplies purchased by the Health Services Authority. These supplies included four ventilators, 50,000 masks and other medical supplies. There are no new results to report today.
(April 7, 2020– Press Conference) An additional 114 persons have recently been tested for COVID-19 at the HSA Laboratory. Six of these results are positive and the remaining 108 are negative. Four of these results are from students who were being quarantined in the government isolation facility and two are related to persons that have previously tested positive. These results bring the total number of positive cases in the Cayman Islands to 45.
(April 6, 2020– Press Conference) There are no new reports of COVID-19 today. Residents who are experiencing financial difficulties during this time should contact the NAU for assistance. Expats who are struggling can contact firstname.lastname@example.org to find out if they qualify for financial support. Police will soon be able to provide on the spot tickets to persons who do not comply with the COVID-19 regulations. The penalties range from $250 for failing to maintain six-feet social distance in a public space, $500 for supermarket shopping outside of people’s allotted day, and up to $750 for opening a business without exemption. To help small businesses during this pandemic the government has also implemented a recovery plan that will provide them with financial assistance.
(April 5, 2020- Press Conference) An additional forty-six tests have recently been conducted at the HSA laboratory. Four of these results are positive and have either been in contact with someone who has recently been tested positive or has recent travel history. These results bring the total positive cases to 39 and 326 negative results. Persons are now allowed to fish from the shore or dock within their 90 minute allowance during the soft curfew. Diving, snorkelling and boating are not permitted.
(April 4, 2020- Press Conference) Cayman Brac now has one positive COVID-19 case and Grand Cayman has an additional five positive cases. Four of these cases are related to someone that has had recently traveled, one case is related someone that was previously tested positive and one case has no travel history. Twenty-seven results from students in the Government provided isolation facilities have came back negative.
(April 3, 2020- Press Conference) Eight COVID-19 tests have been carried out recently at the HSA Laboratory of which one result was positive. This patient was in contact with someone from the same household that was infected from local transmission. The total number of positive cases in Cayman is now 29. From the previous positive cases, one person has fully recovered and has now tested negative, while 13 have clinically recovered and are showing no symptoms. All persons who are staying in the government isolation facility will be tested before being released.
(April 2, 2020- Press Conference) Fifteen additional samples have been tested for COVID-19 of which 10 are negative and 5 are positive. There is also one additional positive result which was initially inconclusive when tested at the HSA Laboratory and was later confirmed as a negative result by CARPHA. These results bring the total number of positive cases in the Cayman Islands to 28.
As of Tuesday 7th April 2020, only persons with the last names beginning with A-K will be allowed on the road for essential services throughout soft curfew only on Monday, Wednesday and Fridays, while persons with the last names beginning with L-Z will be allowed on the road throughout soft curfew on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday. Sunday will become a hard curfew day. The hard curfew and soft curfews will be extended for 2 weeks as of Monday 6th April.
(April 1, 2020-
Press Conference) Twenty two samples have been tested for COVID-19 of
which 14 are negative and 8 are positive. From the positive results,
seven persons have been in immediate contact with someone who has had
recent travel history, while one person has had no travel history. The
Cayman Islands now has 22 active positive cases.
British Airways flight will be coming to Grand Cayman via Bermuda on
Tuesday April 7 2020 for anyone who urgently needs to return to the UK.
If you are in need of this service please call (345) 244 3333 or email: email@example.com.
This flight is also available for persons in the UK that wish to come
back to the Cayman Islands. Seats will be given on a first come, first
served basis. Cost of the ticket is $500.
(March 31, 2020- Press Conference) Thirteen additional
samples have been tested for COVID-19 at the HSA laboratory of which 11
results came back negative and 2 results have came back positive. These
positive results are not travel related and are suspected to be from
community transmission. There is now a total of 14 positive cases in the
Kirk Market has launched a live stream showing the queue in an effort to help customers plan their essential trips.
(March 30, 2020- Press Conference) To reduce the queues in the banks, customers will now have designated days that they can attend. As of Tuesday March 31 until further notice, adults with the last names beginning with A-K can only go to the bank on Monday and Wednesday, while adults with the last names beginning with L-Z can only go to the bank on Tuesday and Thursday. Friday will be open to all customers.
British Airways flight will be coming to Grand Cayman via Bermuda early
next week (date tbc) for anyone who urgently needs to return to the UK.
If you are in need of this service please call (345) 244 3333 or email:
This flight is also available for persons in the UK that wish to come
back to the Cayman Islands. Seats will be given on a first come, first
(March 29, 2020- Press Conference) An additional eighteen samples have been tested for COVID-19 at the HSA laboratory. Four of of these samples are positive and are all travel related. The total number of samples tested in the Cayman Islands are now 207 with 12 active positive results and 194 negative results.
As of Monday March 30 until further notice, adults with the last names beginning with A-K will only be allowed to shop on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. Adults with the last names beginning with L-Z will only be allowed to shop on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays.
Anyone who fails to comply with the soft curfew is guilty of an offense and can be fined $1,000 or six months imprisonment. Those who fail to comply with the hard curfew is guilty of an offense and may be subject to an arrest and will be fined $3,000 or one year imprisonment.
(March 27, 2020- Press Conference) Fifteen samples that were locally tested within the last 48 hours have come back negative. This brings the total number of samples tested in the Cayman Islands to 189 with 8 active positive results, 180 negative results and one death. On Saturday 28 March, 2020 at 5am, a Shelter in Place Provision (soft curfew) policy will be implemented. This means that all but essential businesses must be closed. Residents may only leave their homes if they are going to an essential business such as the supermarkets, gas stations or banks. Residents are reminded that the 'hard' curfew from 7pm-5am will still be in effect until Monday April 6, 2020.
From 5am-7pm, residents may only leave their homes if they are going to
an essential business such as the supermarkets, gas stations or banks.
Hard Curfew- From 7pm-5am, no one is allowed to leave their house unless they are an essential worker. Essential workers only have permission to go to work and go back home.
(March 26, 2020- Press Conference) An additional forty-eight negative tests have been confirmed by the HSA laboratory.
(March 25, 2020- Press Conference) The Cayman Islands now has 8 confirmed cases of COVID-19. Five of the results were related to the Health City Cayman Islands, two were from persons with recent international travel history and one case is suspected of being a locally transmitted case. The results of 118 negative tests were also sent to CARPHA and have been confirmed to be negative.
From 7pm tonight the Cayman Islands will go into 24 hour curfew until 5am Saturday morning. This means that from March 25, 2020 at 7pm until March 28, 2020 at 5am the Cayman Islands will be on lockdown and you are not allowed to leave your house unless you are an essential worker or it is a medical emergency. Anyone who fails to comply with the curfew order is guilty of an offense and can be fined $3,000 or up to a years imprisonment.
(March 24, 2020- Press Conference) The preliminary test results for one more test has come back positive for COVID-19. This patient has no recent travel history and this case is suspected to be a locally transmitted case. These results are preliminary and will need to be checked by the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) to confirm. This brings the total number of samples tested to 104 with only one confirmed case and five positive preliminary results. The Government has also made changes to the curfew which will now be from 7pm-5am. This will initially be for 10 days and will then be monitored every 48 hours to assess the situation. As of Wednesday 25 March 2020 at 6am, all non-essential establishments will be closed.
(March 23, 2020-
Press Conference) The preliminary test results for 2 more tests have
came back positive for COVID-19. This means that Cayman has one
confirmed case and four positive preliminary results. As of March 24,
2020, the Cayman Islands will be placed under a curfew from 9pm-5am.
Residents and visitors must stay in their homes or they may be subject
to arrest and will be fined $3,000 or one year imprisonment. Public
gatherings have also been reduced from 50 persons to 10 persons. All
businesses/stores will close at 8pm.
(March 20, 2020- Press Conference) The preliminary test results for 23 tests have came back negative for COVID-19. So far there have been 88 total number of samples tested with only one confirmed case and two positive preliminary results. The Chief Medical Officer for health wants to remind the public that anyone who fails to comply with the self-isolation order is guilty of an offense and can be fined $1,000 or six months imprisonment.
(March 19, 2020-
Press Conference) The preliminary test results for 2 tests have came
back positive for COVID-19. The remainder of the test results came back
negative. These results include 28 samples from Health City Cayman
Islands and 29 samples from the Health Services Authority. These results
are preliminary and will need to be checked by the Caribbean Public
Health Agency (CARPHA) to confirm. There are currently 7 outstanding
The Government is also reminding students and returning residents to isolate for 14 days upon arrival. An isolation facility has been provided to allow returning students or essential workers to isolate without impacting their families. Call 1-800-534-6555 or email: NEOC@gov.ky for more information.
(March 17, 2020- Press Conference) The preliminary results of 20 tests have came back negative, however these samples will need to be checked by the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA). There are still some tests outstanding and the Cayman Islands Government is awaiting results. As of 22 March, 2020, gyms, salons, spas and bars will be closed and restaurants will only be allowed to offer pickup and delivery services for 2 weeks.
(March 16, 2020- Press Conference) The Owen Roberts International Airports and the Captain Charles Kirkconnell International Airport will be closed for international travel from March 22, 2020 at 11.59pm to April 22, 2020 at 11.59pm. All inbound flights, except from the UK, from March 19 will operate for returning residents only. Outbound flights will operate as usual through to March 22, 2020. Flights emanating from the UK through to 22 March, 2020 will operate as normal. All arriving passengers will need to isolate themselves for 14 days. Both airports will remain open for emergency flights.
are now offering loans and mortgagse for those who need financial
assistance. Call your loan officer to see if you qualify. Water
Authority and CUC will also postpone disconnections for the next 60-90
days for those in need. Some insurance providers will also cover all
treatment required for COVID-19.
A total of 44 tests have been sent off to be tested for COVID-19. These include 30 from Health City Cayman Islands and 14 from other sources.
(March 15, 2020)
On-Island testing can now be done at the Cayman Islands Health Services
Authority (HSA). Local testing will reduce the wait time for results
from 5-10 days to 24-48 hours. Testing will only be done on persons who
have flu symptoms and have recently travelled to a country that has
reported cases of local transmission and on persons with any acute
respiratory illness and those who have been in contact of a confirmed or
probable case of COVID-19. If you are experiencing any symptoms, call
the flu hotline first.
(March 14, 2020) The
first confirmed patient in the Cayman Islands of COVID-19 has passed
away. The patient was a 68 year old Italian man who had been transported
by ambulance to Health City Cayman Islands from a cruise ship for
cardiac treatment. There are currently no other confirmed cases.
Many businesses have adjusted their store hours to conduct additional
sanitation measures and restock products. In order to reduce any
potential transmission of COVID-19, the Cayman Islands Hospital HSA is
restricting all visitors and cancelling all non-emergency services,
elective surgeries and specialist services.
(March 13, 2020-
Press Conference) Effective March 16, 2020, all educational
institutions will be closed from March 16-April 27, all cruise ships
will be denied entry to the Cayman Islands for 60 days and all public gatherings
over 50 persons will be postponed until further notice. The government
has also expanded the travel restrictions to control entry of persons
from high-risk areas. See below in the 'Travel Restrictions' section for
a list of countries.
(March 13, 2020) Some
staff members at the Health City Cayman Islands have fallen sick with
what is presumed to be COVID-19. Clinical Director of Health City Cayman
Islands, Dr. Chattuparambil, has confirmed that the wife of the patient
and any Health City staff members that came into contact with the
patient have been quarantined. Samples are being taken and tested for
COVID-19. Some major events, such as Inter-primary and the LIVE Street
Food Festival, have been postponed due to the current COVID-19
(March 12, 2020- Press Conference)
The first case of coronavirus in the Cayman Islands has been confirmed
during a press conference today at 4.45pm. Four of the results that were
sent off on March 9th were negative, however one test came back
positive. The infected person was transported by ambulance to Health
City Cayman Islands from a cruise ship on Saturday, February 29th, 2020
for cardiac treatment. The Cayman Islands Government has taken the
necessary precautions by keep this patient isolated to reduce the risk
of the virus spreading throughout the Islands.
(March 12, 2020) The Cayman Islands Government is urging the public not to panic buy. Photos have been circulating on social media showing empty store shelves since people have begun stock piling to be prepared for worse case scenarios. This panic buying has caused some supermarkets, such as Kirk Market and Foster's to place product limits on some goods to ensure that there is enough supply to manage the increase in demand. HMCI and Supermarkets in Cayman have confirmed that there will be no supply shortages and freight ships carrying food supplies and household products will continue to arrive on island as normal.
When shopping please be mindful and considerate of others. A household of two does not necessarily need 10 cans of lysol disinfectant spray, 5 packs of toilet paper, and 20 bottles of hand sanitiser.
(March 9th, 2020)
Six samples from Cayman were sent to the Caribbean Public Health Agency
(CARPHA) to be tested for the coronavirus. These patients were feeling
unwell and have recently travelled to countries who are experiencing an
outbreak. Although it is unknown at the time if they have the virus,
four patients remain isolated at home, while one is an inpatient at
Health City Cayman Islands and they are all being actively monitored by
public health officials. The results are to be expected within six days.
On-Island testing for COVID-19 should be available within the next two weeks through the Health Services Authority.
If you are feeling unwell, have any concerns or are exhibiting mild symptoms, call the flu hotline first before going to the A&E. This reduces the impact to the public and reduces the risk of spreading the virus.
Flow Flu Hotline Number: 1-800-534-8600
Digicel Flu Hotline Number: 1 (345) 947 3077
Mental Health Hotline: 1-800-534-6463
Coronaviruses are a family of viruses that normally affects animals including camels, cats and bats. Coronaviruses are zoonotic, which means they are transmitted between animals and humans. The virus itself is a new, or ‘novel’ coronavirus causing respiratory illness in people.
Although it is rare for animal coronaviruses to evolve and infect people, it has occurred before with Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS).
Person-to-person transmission occurs via respiratory droplets with close contacts, similar to how influenza and other respiratory pathogens spread.
Generally, coronavirus can cause more severe symptoms in people with weakened immune systems, older people, and those with long-term conditions like diabetes, cancer and chronic lung disease.
- Sore Throat
- Dry Cough
- Shortness of breath
- Difficulty breathing
Symptoms occur 2-14 days after being exposed to the virus. Coronavirus pneumonia is a dry cough with no runny nose. If you have a runny nose and sputum, you may just have a common cold.
A Flu Hotline is available to assist people if they have concerns or are exhibiting symptoms. Call the Flu Hotline on 1 800 534 8600, and, depending on your symptoms, an HSA official will visit you at your home. If you are exhibiting any coronavirus symptoms you must self-isolate.
Testing can be done at the Cayman Islands Health Services Authority (HSA) and the CTMH Doctor's Hospital for persons exhibiting symptoms or those considered front-line workers.
Public Health Plan of Action
The Department of Public Health currently has three scenarios planned if patients have contracted the virus in the Cayman Islands. These include:
- If a patient has mild symptoms they will be isolated at their residence. If they require isolation from family, an undisclosed location will be discussed
- If a patient has moderate symptoms they will be isolated in special rooms at the Cayman Islands Health Services Authority and private institutions
- If a patient has severe symptoms they will be isolated in rooms in the ICU at the George Town Hospital and private institutions.
How to Stay Safe
The virus is spread in large droplets by coughing and sneezing. In response, James Robb MD UC, an American pathologist and the WHO have issued recommendations and precautions to prevent the spread of this disease. These include:
- Avoid touching your face, mouth and nose - the most common way for the virus to infect you is through your nose or mouth via your hands. It is now mandatory to wear a face mask/covering when entering any enclosed public spaces across the Cayman Islands
- Frequent hand-washing with antibacterial soap and water for 10-20 seconds or using alcohol-based hand rub/sanitiser greater than 60%. The virus can only live on your hands for 5-10 minutes
- When coughing/sneezing cover mouth and nose with flexed elbow or tissue – throw away the tissue and wash your hands
- Avoid handshaking - use a fist bump, slight bow, elbow bump, etc.
- Avoid close contact with anyone who has fever and cough - you can also get infected if an infected person coughs or sneezes onto or into your nose or mouth.
- Try not to grasp door handles with your hand - use your closed fist or hip
- If you have fever/cough/difficulty breathing seek medical care early and disclose travel history
- Use your knuckles to touch light switches, elevator buttons, doorbells, etc.
- Use disinfectant wipes to disinfect areas that your hands will come in contact with such as the handle and child seat in grocery carts, hand rails on public transport and stairs, etc
- If you do not have hand sanitiser or disinfectant wipes available, use disposable gloves
- If visiting live markets in areas currently experiencing cases of coronavirus, avoid direct contact with live animals and surfaces in contact with animals
- Avoid consuming raw or undercooked animal products
- Drink plenty of room temperature water - avoid ice cold water. You can also gargle salt in warm water as a prevention.
If the droplets fall on a metal surface it will live for at least 12
hours. If you come into contact with any metal surface, wash your
hands as soon as you can with an antibacterial soap. On fabric it can
survive for 6-12 hours, so avoid sneezing in your elbow, if possible.
The virus can also be spread on cell phone screens, handles and handsets
and will be potent for up to seven days.
Advice for Home Isolation
If you are experiencing any symptoms or have been advised to isolate your self at home, here are some tips:
- Stay home- Do not go to work, school, or public areas, and do not use buses or taxis until you have been told by the Public Health Department that is safe to do so. You will need to ask for help if you require groceries, other shopping or medications.
- Separate yourself from others in the home- You should stay in a well-ventilated room with a window to outside that can be opened, separate from other people in your home. Use a separate bathroom and towels from the rest of the household, if available. If you have to share these facilities, regular cleaning will be required. Consider creating a bathroom rota for washing and bathing with the isolated person going last. The isolated person should then thoroughly clean the bathroom to avoid the spread of the virus. If you live in shared accommodation with a communal kitchen, bathroom and living area, you should stay in your room with the door closed, only coming out when necessary, wearing a face mask. Avoid using the area while others are present.
- Call your doctor of flu hotline before visiting- If your symptoms are getting progressively worse and you need to see a doctor, you should discuss what you are experiencing in advance over the phone. This will ensure that your healthcare provider can take steps to minimise contact with others. If it is an emergency and you need to call an ambulance, inform the call handler or operator that you are being tested for COVID-19.
- Wear a face mask- If you have to be in the same room with other people, you should wear a face mask at all times. If you cannot wear a face mask, avoid close contact of at least 3-6ft.
- Practice good hygiene- Cover your mouth and nose with a disposable tissue when you cough or sneeze and dispose of it into a plastic waste bag. Immediately wash your hands with soap and water after you cough, sneeze or touch any surface.
- Do not have visitors in your home- If it is not essential for someone to visit, talk over the phone. This will minimise the chances of the virus spreading.
- Avoid sharing household items- You should have designated dishes, drinking glasses, eating utensils, towels, bedding or other items to avoid sharing them with other people in your home. After using these items, wash them thoroughly with soap and water. Laundry, bedding and towels should be placed in a plastic bag.
- Handling waste- All waste that has been in contact with the individual should be put in a plastic rubbish bag and tied when full. The plastic bag should then be placed in a second bin bag and tied. Do not dispose of it or put it out for collection until you know that patient does not have COVID-19.
Countries Affected by the Virus
At the time of publication (16/11/2020) there are 217 countries/regions affected by COVID-19 and a total of 55,263,971 confirmed cases, 1,330,539 deaths and 38,353,915 recovered cases.