In the second instance in one week, the Seychelles has see a spike in the new number of COVID-19 cases. In an attempt to slow down the spread, the newly elected administration of Seychelles has decided on Sunday in a high level meeting to place new restrictions on it’s people.
As of today, January 4rd 2020, the small island archipelago has 83 active coronavirus cases with 37 foreign nationals and 46 locals. Four patients remain in critical to serious conditions. Seychelles recorded it’s first covid-19 related death yesterday.
Confirmed cases of community transmission forced the Government to implement the first wave of restriction measures on December 30.
Restrictions on movement and a work from home orders were issued for “non-essential” workers.
The Public Health Commissioner Dr. Jude Gedeon informed the press that they have identified “12 new cases and these are people with symptoms” expressing his fear of more individuals within the community whom are not showing any symptoms but are spreading the virus.
This alarming number of cases has flooded the contact tracing team with a pool of 800 individuals whom have had contact with the recent cases.
The Head of State, President Wavel Ramkalawan urged the local population to please take personal responsibility and aid in breaking the chain of transmission.
“The situation is constantly evolving and it is critical that we all play our role to mitigate the spread of coronavirus in our communities. Each one of us needs to make it our personal responsibility as citizens to ensure that we break the chain of transmission during the coming 10 days,” said Ramkalawan.
The new restrictions would limit movement of both locals and foreigners whom arrive in Seychelles. The Public Health Commissioner Dr. Jude Gedeon stated that : “All incoming travellers, both foreigners and Seychellois will stay for 10 mandatory days in a facility either a quarantine one of a tourist accommodation before doing a PCR test. There will be strict enforcement on social distancing and there will be more police presence,”
Limitation on stores and retail outlets were also placed. General grocery stores will be the only ones to remain open and have “normal” hours of operation with special exception made for hardware stores whom would remain open until noon. These new restrictions will be in place until January 13th when a review of the situation will be done.
Additionally other facilities such as stand-alone restaurants and mobile food vendors with be closed. Furthermore, all sporting activities are suspended except fitness activities which involve members of ones family members or individuals whom share the same household.
Visitation of patients at medical facilities and elderly homes have also been banned.
The Head of State, President Ramkalawan stated that a vaccination campaign will begin as soon and he would be the first to take the vaccine as a show of confidence and as an example to follow by the people of Seychelles.