Anguilla has activated its Stage 3 COVID-19 response after it experienced a spike in cases earlier this week.
As of Saturday, April 24 at 3PM, a total of 43 people linked to the cluster identified on April 21 have tested positive for the virus, the Anguilla Ministry of Health said in a press release.
Since the start of the pandemic in March 2020 and up to April 20, Anguilla had 30 confirmed cases with one active imported case on island. The island also boasted of residents not needing to wear masks or social distance due to its tight controls for entering and quarantine before being allowed to move around.
On April 21, a case of COVID-19 was confirmed in a symptomatic female resident of Anguilla who had no apparent direct links to any imported case of the virus, the ministry said. Linked to this case, two more people tested positive on the evening of April 21.
The government moved swiftly to enact containment measures to prevent further spread.
An aggressive contact tracing programme identified the 471 who were eventually tested, out of which 40 more people were confirmed as positive for COVID-19.
The positive cases consists of 39 adults and four children. Health officials there have been no hospitalisations and all cases are in isolation.
Contact tracing and surveillance are ongoing and have now expanded to include the Orelia Kelly and Valley Primary Schools and the Albena Lake-Hodge Comprehensive School, Campus B.
The Ministry of Education is in the process of contacting parents of children who may have been exposed.
Anguilla’s Executive Council agreed to implement a 14-day lockdown which began on April 22 at 2359. Ports have been closed to incoming passengers with outgoing movements permitted.
Only essential service provider are allowed to leave home. Residents are permitted to seek medical care, including vaccinations, to buy food or fuel.
All non-essential workplaces have been closed and all public gatherings are prohibited. This includes the closure of churches, schools, nightclubs and bars. Restaurants and other food establishments are restricted to take-out services only. Customers are expected to practice social distance when collecting food.
Mandatory social distancing measures in spaces allowed to remain open, including capacity limits and mask wearing recommended in spaces where physical distancing is not possible have been re-introduced.
There are restrictions on visiting residential facilities for the elderly and prisons and other community homes.
Anguilla COVID-19 Hotline: +1 264 476 7627 or +1 264 584 4263. WhatsApp contact available on both numbers.