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Dr. Nadia Astwood:  October 15 Update from TCI’s Chief Medical Officer

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#TurksandCaicos, October 22, 2021 – The TCI is currently in a better position in relation to the pandemic than the previous time we met. As it stands, we currently have 53 active cases with 46 in Providenciales and 7 in Grand Turk with 1 hospital admission which Dr Braithwaite Tennant will expound on later.

An additional 10 (revised to 12) new cases will be reflected on today’s dashboard.

Total number of cases of COVID 19 since the onset of the epidemic: 2,910; of these 2,824 Recovered 23 persons have unfortunately passed away.  53 Active; eight individuals have died abroad; one Repatriated ; one died from other cause.  Of the active cases = three reside in GT and 50 reside in Provo.

NEW SURGE IN CASES Since July 7th 2021, we have detected a total of 485 new cases

Description: 235 or 49% are male

AGE GROUP                        CASES

0 – 9 years                           44

10 – 19                                 63

20 – 29                                 83

30 – 39                                 99

40 – 49                                 97

50 – 59                                 69

60 – 69                                 17

70 – 79                                 11

80+                                        2

Total                                      485

 

Three hundred and fifty-nine (359) of the cases or (74%) are residents.  Initially more tourists or visitors were testing positive, however more recently most new cases are in residents.

We can attribute this change to the roll out of the vaccinated visitors only policy which came into effect on 1st September 2021.

Three-hundred and three (303), (62%) of the cases since 7th July 2021 have been symptomatic.

This time around, we have noted that we have been seeing more symptomatic persons. 110 or (23%) are listed as contacts of other positive cases; 168 or (35%) are linked to international travel.

And 207 (43%) unlinked. The number of unlinked cases speaks to ongoing community spread of COVID19.

Breakthrough Cases

Breakthrough cases, which are defined as cases occurring in persons who have been fully vaccinated- have been documented in 106 persons since the beginning of the vaccination programme.

Of note, this number includes data collected on visitors who would have been vaccinated. Breakthrough infections are expected. Based on available evidence, vaccination may make illness less severe for those who are vaccinated and still get sick.

The risk of infection, hospitalization, and death are all much lower in vaccinated people compared to unvaccinated and so the message from the Ministry of Health remains the same-we encourage all eligible persons to become vaccinated.

Of these cases described earlier, only 2 have been hospitalized and there have been no deaths in vaccinated individuals.

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Guys, Have 2 Minutes? Here’s How to Check Yourself for Testicular Cancer

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Testicular cancer is a rare form of cancer for men in The Bahamas.  It is highly curable — if you know it’s there!

 

November 30, 2021 – Men…how often do you perform a self-exam to check yourselves for testicular cancer?

While it’s a relatively rare form of cancer, young men aren’t exempt – in fact, testicular cancer occurs most often in young and middle-aged men. The good news is, it can usually be treated successfully.

The most common symptom of testicular cancer is a lump on your testicle. But that’s not the only sign of this disease.

Men who have testicular cancer may experience several different kinds of symptoms, says oncologist Timothy Gilligan, MD, a Medical Oncologist at Cleveland Clinic who specializes in treating testicular cancer.

Testicular cancer most frequently strikes men younger than age 44, and is the most commonly diagnosed cancer for men ages 15 to 34. It is almost always curable if found early, Dr. Gilligan says, and it is usually curable even when at a later stage. So it’s important to know signs and symptoms.

Here, Dr. Gilligan says, are five possible signs of testicular cancer you might not know about:

5 Testicular Cancer Symptoms That Aren’t a Lump  – Know what to look for and catch it early

  1. A feeling of heaviness or pressure in your scrotum.
  2. Change in testicle size or firmness.Certain types of testicular tumors can reduce testosterone or increase estrogen in the body, which can result in a change in testicle size or firmness.
  3. Swollen legs.When a tumor spreads to the lymph node, it can constrict blood flow in the veins and result in a blood clot. The clots often occur in the legs, which causes them to swell. You might even experience blood clot symptoms such as pain and difficulty breathing.
  4. Lower back pain and shortness of breath.These are symptoms of advanced testicular cancer, meaning the cancer has spread to lymph nodes behind your stomach. Shortness of breath also may signal that the cancer has spread to your lungs, which may make it harder for air to move in and out.
  5. Breast growth or tenderness.In rare cases, hormone changes also can cause breast tenderness or growth of breast tissue. Some tumors can secrete high levels of a hormone called human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG), which stimulates breast development.

If you experience any of these symptoms, make an appointment with your doctor right away, Dr. Gilligan says. If your physician diagnoses you with epididymitis or orchitis and the symptoms do not resolve quickly with antibiotics, request an ultrasound to evaluate for a testicular tumor.

“While up to 95 percent of men with testicular cancer are cured, it’s important to get care quickly if you’re experiencing symptoms because testicular cancers usually grow fast,” Dr. Gilligan says. “If there is disease, the earlier it is treated, the greater than chance for success.”

 

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Health

Dental Digits; Health Minister gives Update on Great Shape Inc & Sandals Foundation partnership

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By Sherrica Thompson

Staff Writer

 

#TurksandCaicos, November 30, 2021 – Minister of Health and Human Services, Honorable Jamell Robinson, announced in the House of Assembly on Monday November 22 that three thousand six hundred and sixty-eight persons in Providenciales benefited from the 1000 Smiles Dental Clinic’s two weeks project.

The programme, which was started on October 15, by Great Shape! Inc., a non-profit based in the United States and facilitated by the Sandals Foundation Beaches Resorts, provided free dental care and education to citizens.

Minister Robinson said the project was valued at $1,1400,701, and 5,431procedures were provided. These included cleanings, extractions, sealants, and fluorides that involved three dentures and 18 root canals.

He said that 103 volunteers, including 45 dentists and hygienists, visited and worked with the Department of Dental Staff.

The Oral Health Education team visited most schools in Providenciales, where 400 children were impacted. The team provided interactive sessions and lessons on nutrition, home care prevention and professional dental care. Most children were also given a toothbrush, floss, and toothpaste.

Minister Robinson thanked Joseph Wright and the volunteers for the visit that he described as impactful and said he looks forward to similar partnerships in the future.

 

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Health

US Deaths to COVID higher, Dr. Fauci floundering on Fully Vaccinated definition

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#UnitedStatesofAmerica, November 24, 2021 – Vaccine manufacturers are predicting that booster shots for Covid 19 will be needed every six months for years to come, and Dr. Anthony Fauci, US infectious disease expert and advisor to the president has gone on record with the hope that this will not be the case.  But anytime Dr. Fauci says he hopes something won’t happen in relation to the vaccines… it always certainly does.

“We’ll continue to follow the data, because right now when we’re boosting people, what we’re doing is following them,” Fauci said. “We’re going to see what the durability of that protection is, and as we always do, you just follow and let the data guide your policy and let the data guide your recommendations.”

The vaccine is not working to keep Covid-19 deaths lower; more Americans have died in 2021 due to Covid 19, than in 2020.  CDC data says 14,700 more people have died in 2021 than last year due to COVID-19 — and there’s still more than a month left in the year for that number to grow.

Overall, the US has lost 770,000 people to the coronavirus.

Dr. Fauci is also floundering on the definition of fully vaccinated; saying people who have taken the third shot are being monitored to see how long efficacy holds up; he simply does not know if it will wear off again in six months.

“…fully vaccinated right now, by definition, is the original two doses… of the Pfizer and Moderna and a single dose of J and J.”

Media reports indicate there are plans to redefine fully vaccinated as having received three shots, evidence however could prove that in six months, the inoculated are back to square one.

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