Health Minister Dr Frank Anthony has revealed that around 37 positive COVID-19 results have been confirmed so far, in relation to testing in dorms nationwide.
Collaborative efforts between health officials and the Ministry of Education had emerged in the testing of students, teachers and other workers returning to the dormitories. This is because these people came from communities that had reported spikes in COVID-19 cases.
Currently, a total of 19 students, 10 teachers, and eight ancillary staff have returned positive tests. While they remain alone, the tests will continue. The Health Minister did not reveal which administrative regions these people come from.
“We have been able to continue testing at all of the dorm facilities and at present, we have [over 30] persons who have been positive. This would include teachers, students and staff of these dorms. That’s something we’ve been looking at. We currently have 19 students, 10 teachers and eight staff members who have tested positive, ”shared Dr Anthony.
The Ministry of Health had implemented a system during the last reopening of the school, where all students of dorms were tested on their return to school. It was continued this season, using rapid antigen and PCR testing.
“We started a program where we will be able to test them as students come into these dorm schools. We applied our rapid antigen testing to these areas as well as PCR tests. So all the students coming back to the dorms would be tested and then we would be able to assure the Ministry of Education that they have a safe environment, ”the Minister was quoted as saying this week.
In November last year, eight students housed in the President’s College dorm, had tested positive. That was out of a total of 139 students housed in the educational facility. All were from Region Eight (Potaro-Siparuni). After that, five teachers, six students, and two ancillary staff in Bartica, Region Seven (Cuyuni-Mazaruni), tested positive.
Meanwhile, all swabs for COVID-19 Region Nine (Upper Takutu-Upper Essequibo) students returned negative results.
Schools have reopened for Grades 10, 11 and 12 and those attending practical, technical and vocational establishments. The Ministry of Education has given parents the option of keeping their children home should they feel uncomfortable sending them back to school given the COVID-19 situation. Parents can also choose to transfer their children to the nearest high school – a process that can be completed in less than 24 hours.

New cases
As of Thursday, there were 33 new cases of COVID-19. As a result, there are now 6469 confirmed cases and 167 deaths.
The Ministry dashboard revealed that there were five people in the COVID-19 Intensive Care Unit (ICU), 20 in institutional isolation, 287 in home isolation and eight in institutional quarantine.
Of the 39,892 people tested so far, 3336 men and 3133 women returned positive results. Currently, 5990 people have improved.
New cases were found in Regions One (Barima-Waini), Two, Three (Essequibo-West Demerara Islands), Region Four (Demerara-Mahaica), Region Five (Mahaica-Berbice), Region Six (East Berbice-Corentyne) and Seven.
The cases in Regions Eight, Nine and 10 (Upper Demerara-Berbice) remain at 201, 279 and 523 respectively. (G12)

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