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Seventh-Day Adventist Church Camp, Balandra

While the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Trinidad and Tobago remained at nine yesterday, the Ministry of Health’s Chief Medical Officer Dr Roshan Parasram says some of the 68 people who were quarantined in Balandra after returning from Guadeloupe are now exhibiting viral symptoms.

Parasram made the comment yesterday during a post-Cabinet media briefing called to update the country on the measures being put in place to deal with the outbreak of COVID-19 now in T&T.

The group was immediately sent into a 14-day quarantine at the Seventh Day Adventist Church Camp—Camp Balandra on Wednesday after returning from Guadeloupe. They had been stranded there after the cruise ship they were on, the Costa Favalosa, was denied entry to Martinique after leaving Guadeloupe when several passengers tested positive for the virus.

The return of the 68 nationals was preceded by the arrival of two women who were on the same cruise. They, however, were sent for treatment at one of the two quarantine hospitals at either Caura or Couva after they tested positive for the virus on the way home.

Yesterday, Parasram said some of the quarantined nationals at Balandra were now exhibiting symptoms which included sore throats and runny noses and they are now to be tested for the virus.

Asked for an update on the nine patients who had contracted the virus, Parasram said they were still receiving treatment at the Caura and Couva hospitals.

“Basically, all nine cases, they are still within the hospital system. Some are in Caura, some in Couva but the more severe ones are showing improvement day-to-day. The milder ones are doing well,” Parasram said.

“In Balandra, they would have come in recently so we would have had a few people developing mild symptoms. Of course, as we said, once you have symptoms we would test but other than that… mild symptoms, meaning sore throat, runny nose, that kind of thing… very mild symptoms. But once we have symptoms, as I said, we would test as many people as we can. Of course, if they become positive, we will transfer to one of the centres, either Couva or Caura.”