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Covid-19: Average real-time reproduction number passes 2

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The latest coronavirus figures released by the Government (Graphic by Raina Barbosa)

Another 25 coronavirus cases were found in the latest test results that came back to health officials, it was revealed last night.

Kim Wilson, the health minister, added that the seven-day average of the virus’ real-time reproduction number had reached 2.06 - the highest level recorded.

Two recent clusters connected to social gatherings have been called “super spreader events”.

Ms Wilson said 50 cases “and growing” were connected to a single gathering.

She added the latest results came from 2,747 tests for the coronavirus.

Four of the new cases came in on flights from Atlanta, Toronto and Miami between last Friday and Saturday.

Another four cases were transmitted on the island with a known contact or source.

The remaining new cases are under investigation.

Bermuda has had 456 total confirmed cases and 200 are active.

Two people are in hospital - one in critical care.

Another 247 people have recovered from the coronavirus and nine people with Covid-19 have died.

Ms Wilson highlighted that the bug was spread in recent weeks by younger people.

She said that the latest group of cases appeared to stem from people “socialising outside their bubble in large group gatherings”.

Ms Wilson added: “Unfortunately, as we’re seeing in other jurisdictions, it’s the younger generation that are regrettably the ones that are contracting and transmitting the disease.”

David Burt, the Premier, said that the Bermuda Government Molecular Diagnostic Laboratory received 6,741 test samples between December 8 and 12 – an average of 1,348 a day.

He added that was a 94 per cent increase on the five-day period between December 1 and 5, when 3,479 samples were received by the MDL.

The Premier said that anyone who needed to move around the island during the 11pm to 5am curfew hours could apply for an exemption.

He added that some groups of people were already exempted from the curfew restrictions.

These include people collecting travellers from the airport and taxi drivers transporting passengers who have been given an exemption from the rules.

Mr Burt said that more than 11,000 people have downloaded the WeHealth Bermuda app in a bid to slow the spread of the coronavirus.

He appealed to business owners to encourage their staff to download the app as the information could allow selective rather than blanket quarantines when positive cases were detected.

Mr Burt added that yesterday marked the deadline for laid-off workers to lodge their applications to obtain this week’s unemployment benefits.

He said anyone who still had to apply to go to the benefits link on the Government website.

Mr Burt added the Bermuda Economic Development Corporation would announce details later this week on relief measures to help businesses hit by the pandemic cover their overheads.

The island’s bus service remained off the roads yesterday, but Mr Burt said Lawrence Scott, the transport minister, planned to discuss a resumption of service with unions, as well as the Department of Public Transportation.

Digicel closed its retail store on Reid Street along with the BTC Payment Centre on Victoria Street after a front of house employee tested positive for the coronavirus.

Argus Group in Hamilton closed its offices to walk-in traffic until next Monday after a staff member tested positive.

The insurance firm said its premises would be deep-cleaned.

Somersfield Academy in Devonshire went to remote learning yesterday - and The Royal Gazette was told of several nursery schools that had decided to close yesterday and today.

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Published December 15, 2020 at 9:47 am (Updated December 15, 2020 at 9:46 am)

Covid-19: Average real-time reproduction number passes 2

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