NMI remains Covid-19-free

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WITH very few flights coming in, it is unlikely that the CNMI will have a Covid-19 case, Commonwealth Healthcare Corp. communications and public relations specialist Zoe Travis said on Tuesday.

“Many airlines have suspended flights. If we don’t have many people coming in, it is not likely that we are going to get a case, although it is still possible and we are still in a high-risk region,” she added.

She said CHCC continues to regularly monitor coronavirus cases through the Johns Hopkins University website and other reputable sources of official information.

As of Tuesday evening, there were 80,149 confirmed cases in Asia, Europe, North America, and Africa — 27,683 of people had recovered and 2,699 had died.

Travis noted that the mortality rate has been steady at about 2 to 3%.

Covid-19, she said, is transmissible but less deadly compared to other diseases like Ebola, which has a 40% mortality rate.

The CNMI was Covid-19 free as of Tuesday.

On Friday, CHCC said the sample from a low priority suspected Covid-19 case tested negative for the coronavirus.

CHCC submitted a specimen for testing on Feb. 10 to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Travis said the patient did not meet the full coronavirus case definition, and had not traveled in the areas of concern.

“But the patient had similar symptoms. They could not rule out some things. So we sent it [the specimen] — we wanted to make sure that we didn’t have an outbreak here,” Travis said.

While waiting for the test result, she said CHCC doctors and surveillance unit were aware of the patient’s location. “Measures were taken to protect the public in the event that it [test] came back positive.”

According to the Guam Department of Public Health and Social Services, CDC has issued the following travel guidance related to Covid-19:

• South Korea — Level 3, Avoid Non-Essential Travel — last updated Feb. 24;

• China — Level 3, Avoid Non-Essential Travel — last updated Feb. 22;

• Japan — Level 2, Practice Enhanced Precautions — last updated Feb. 22;

• Hong Kong — Level 1, Practice Usual Precautions — issued Feb. 19.

DPHSS said those planning to travel are advised to check the latest information from the following sites:


U.S. Department of State

DPHSS said everyone can do their part to help respond to this emerging public health threat:

It is currently flu and respiratory disease season and CDC recommends getting a flu vaccine, taking everyday preventive actions to help stop the spread of germs, and taking flu antivirals if prescribed.

• Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.

• Avoid touching your mouth, eyes, and nose with unwashed hands.

• Avoid close contact with people who are sick.

• Practice proper cough etiquette — cover your mouth and nose with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.

• Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects or surfaces.

• Stay home when you are sick — do not go to work or school.

For more information, go to

November 2020 pssnewsletter

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