British Virgin Islands

Sunday, Sep 19, 2021

Maskless parties, large social gatherings contributed to COVID spike- Brewley-Massiah

Maskless parties, large social gatherings contributed to COVID spike- Brewley-Massiah

With health authorities suspecting the Delta variant of the COVID-19 virus present in the Virgin Islands (VI), a recent series of large social gatherings has been flagged as a contributing factor to the VI’s current spike in COVID-19 cases.

This was highlighted by National Epidemiologist Harmony Brewley-Massiah during a COVID-19 briefing last evening July 8, 2021.

Ms Brewley-Massiah said decreasing public health measures coupled with undetected community cases are what ultimately resulted in the current COVID-19 outbreak.

“The physical distancing went through the door," she said. "We had a number of maskless parties, we have some graduations, we've had a lot of social gatherings and what that did was increase the contact rate and actually change the dynamics of the virus.”

Ms Harmony Brewley-Massiah said decreasing public health measures coupled with undetected community cases is what ultimately resulted in the current COVID-19 outbreak.


Vaccinated Vs Unvaccinated


Brewley-Massiah said as such, the reason for the surge in the VI is one that was multifaceted and cannot be attributed to a vaccinated versus unvaccinated debate.

“If everybody in the country was actually adhering or doing their best, for the most part, to adhere to the public health protocols, even if someone had the virus the probability or the likelihood of you contracting it would be slim to none.”

The National Epidemiologist reiterated; however, that the recent surges in other counties have also pointed to the decline in the public health measures as has been the case in the VI.

While health authorities are yet to lab confirm the presence of the Delta variant in the VI, the super-contagious variant, previously called B.1.617.2, has now spread to 92 countries worldwide, according to the World Health Organisation.

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