At a time when outbreaks of COVID-19 have been detected in restaurants, shopping centers and churches, an epidemiologist from the government’s medical advisory team (task force), Juan Carlos Reyes today described the advance of the disease in Puerto Rico as worrying and affirmed that the group of health workers, who are meeting today with Governor Wanda Vázquez understands that more restrictive measures must be taken to avoid crowds.
On Radio Isla 1320 AM, Reyes stated that in today’s meeting with the governor will be the members of the economic advisory team, and acknowledged that currently, both groups do not agree on the measures to be taken to control the pandemic that it has already killed 346 people and sickened over 10,000 people on the island.
“At this time (the recommendations of the economic group and the health group) are not compatible, it will be very difficult to reach an agreement total, ” said Reyes. “We are in the midst of a very strong rebound in Puerto Rico,” he said in an interview with the radio station.
He advanced that the health proposals that they would be presenting to the governor today include closure of dining rooms in restaurants but not a total closure of businesses, this in consideration of the economic impact. “Based on all the information that comes to us from the economic task force, we understand that a total ‘lockdown’ would be very strong for the island in terms of unemployment, loss of small businesses, but we are recommending that spaces be closed, we see how our guard is lowered in many places, in the malles the difference has been seen “, he said.
Reyes said that the COVID-19 figures reported today, with 633 confirmed positive cases, represent the highest number of infections in a single 24-hour report. The current executive order of the governor to deal with the pandemic was extended until next Friday.
Rather than being in a rebound, Dr. Reyes pointed out that “we have not come down from a The rise in cases that we saw, we’ve seen an increase since mid-July, and that has been quite sustained. At the beginning of July there were a hundred and more cases, in the middle it was 200, and in August we see over 300, 400, and see a report of 600 confirmed cases, at a time when we are not doing a lot of tests … it is worrying ”
Reyes warned that it is about community infections, which implies that it is in people on the island that the disease is spreading so that it is no longer mainly people arriving through the airport. “People must leave those family parties,” he assured.
Reyes said that a public orientation campaign is necessary and that for that the Department of “Health must be more aggressive.”
“I would like to see a campaign of high-risk places in Puerto Rico, seeing the epidemic in a more creole way, that there are high-risk spaces… where are our people getting infected? ”, he raised.
Questioned of what to do to control the pandemic, Reyes replied: In the case of COVID, there are no ‘magic bullets’, but we have seen recent reports of ‘contact tracing’ that point to outbreaks in some restaurants, in closed places such as malls (shopping centers), places such as churches have been identified there are many places still open that much of this transmission is taking place. ”
” Today there are too many spaces for people to congregate, I Personally, I understand that it is necessary to look for the way that the congregation of people in places with recirculating air, and the ‘enforcement’ (monitor compliance), the government must watch over people who are congregating in public places ”, stated Reyes.