Haiti battles COVID-19

PORT AU PRINCE, Haiti (CMC) — Haiti has recorded more than 3,000 cases of the novel coronavirus during a one-month period as the French-speaking Caribbean Community country announced that 262 cases have been confirmed between Sunday and yesterday

The Ministry of Public Health said the new cases, more than 100 per cent on the previous day, bring the total to 3,334 since the first case was detected on March 19.

It said that in the past 30 days 3,205 positive cases have been confirmed and that the death toll has increased by one to 51.

The Ministry of Health said that there were 3,259 active cases, an increase of 261 in the past 2 hours, while the number of suspected cases since March 19 is 7,351.

Meanwhile, the group, Mdecins Sans Frontires (MSF) said that it believes the real figures regarding the number of people testing positive for the virus “are probably much higher”.

MSF, which opened a 45-bed Covid-19 treatment centre here last month, said it is currently treating 25 patients, many of whom are “seriously ill”.

MSF chief of mission in Haiti, Hassan Issa, said that the group is also following 60 other patients on an outpatient basis in the capital and surrounding areas.

“Some patients come to us with positive test results, and others who need oxygen or hospitalisation are treated while we send their test to a government-run laboratory,” Issa added.

MSF said it is also concerned that many people with COVID-19 symptoms are not going to the hospital for treatment, thereby spreading the virus in communities and reducing the chances of survival for individuals.

“As the spread of the virus accelerates, so does the stigma around it,” said Issa, adding, “Many people with symptoms of COVID-19 are slow to come or forgo treatment.

“ A dozen patients died on arrival, and many more were in critical condition and in light of this, we continue to carry out health promotion activities and call those with symptoms of COVID-19 to seek immediate care, as this can significantly improve their chances of being treated successfully,” Issa added.

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