While the number of new Covid-19 infections and the death rate continues to hike, the TCI Deputy Premier, who also serves as the Minister of Health, announced the new changes to the Covid-19 rules that will allow restaurants, bar owners, and taxi drivers to increase their carrying capacity.
In his fortnightly Covid-19 measures review after a meeting with the cabinet, Hon. Saunders on Wednesday March 31 revealed that the Islands’ health facilities are still strained, but there is an improvement from the previous 150 per cent to the present 101 per cent patients.
He also said that the government has already resolved the hospitals’ oxygen deficit to ensure enough oxygen deposits for the patients in hospitals. Hon. Saunders, however, urged the TCI residents to comply with the Covid-19 rules to help bring the virus down and open the economy as soon as possible.
“We have to open the economy pretty fast as soon as we can. But, to do that, we must get the number of the virus very down to at least 3 per cent,” Hon. Saunders emphasized while giving lawbreakers the last chance to comply or face the full force of the law.
The Deputy Premier also announced the arrival of 14,000 doses of vaccines to ramp up the fight against the novel Coronavirus.
“Today, just a few hours ago, we had 14,000 doses of vaccine arrived in the country. This is our third batch. We’ve been doing pretty well, but we are still behind where we’d want to be,” said Saunders. According to the Minister of Health, the government strives to attain at least 80 per cent of the population vaccinated by July.
After briefing the country on the issues and updates from the cabinet, he announced new measures to take effect from Friday in addition to the already extended raft of measures. According to the Hon. Saunders the 11 pm to 5 am curfew, and 10 pm business closure remains in place. However, Pleasure crafts are limited to 50 per cent and keep a logbook of the passengers and encourage them to check their temperatures.
Social gathering resumed but limited to 30 persons. Religious meetings are limited to 30 per cent indoors and up to 50 people outdoors, applicable to weddings, funerals, and regular services.
However, Bars and Restaurants with 100 per cent vaccinated staff will have up to 60 per cent of their normal guests’ capacity. Additionally, vaccinated taxi drivers can carry up to 50 per cent of their normal capacity from the initial three persons allowed for unvaccinated drivers.