KINGSTON – The Government has adjusted the curfew Order for Jamaica, in the effort to reduce the transmission of novel coronavirus (COVID-19), Prime Minister Andrew Holness announced Wednesday.
“The Easter period presents us the perfect opportunity to slow the spread of the disease during the third incubation period after our first confirmed case and the second incubation period since the arrival of incoming passengers between the 18th and the 23rd of March 2020,” he said.
“The Stay-at-Home Orders are designed to specifically limit unnecessary movement of people, which will limit the movement of the virus.”
Curfews were first imposed on April 1 to last until April 8.
The adjusted hours of the curfew are: from 8 p.m. Wednesday, April 8 to 6 a.m. Thursday, April 9; from 8 p.m. on Thursday, April 9 to 7 a.m. on Friday, April 10; from Friday, April 10 to Monday, April 13, the curfew will commence at 3 p.m. each day and end at 7 a.m. the following day; and on Monday, April 13, the curfew will begin at 3 p.m. and end on Tuesday, April 14 at 5 a.m.
After Easter, the nightly curfews will be between 9 p.m. and 5 a.m. commencing on Tuesday, April 14 and ending on April 21, 2020.
Jamaica has had 63 confirmed COVID-19 cases – 34 males and 29 females.
Minister of Health and Wellness Dr Christopher Tufton said Tuesday that government anticipates there will be a surge in those numbers.
“The extent of that surge is a function of how we manage what information we have and can discern and the process of containment and treatment,” he said.
Giving an update on the trajectory of the spread of the virus, Chief Medical Officer Dr Jacquiline Bisasor McKenzie stuck to the earlier prediction that there could be a doubling of cases every eight days.
“We’re still travelling along that path,” she said.
“It just takes one case for a lot of persons to be exposed and for that to be changed dramatically, so we all have to be cautious.”
To prevent an increase in COVID-19 cases in Jamaica, the Government has been stressing the need for citizens to maintain social distances in public spaces; for people who have travelled outside of Jamaica recently, to stay at home and self-quarantine, and for people who feel ill to stay home.
Calls have also been made for people who returned to the island between March 18 and 24 to report to the Ministry of Health and Wellness, in an effort to prevent and control community spread of the virus.
So far, 4 500 people have responded, with another 1 000 still to get in touch with the ministry. (CMC)