The Ministry of Health, Wellness and the Environment continues to work with all of its healthcare stakeholders, both internal and external to critically examine available data and provide timely and accurate reports on COVID-19 related deaths for both hospitalized and nonhospitalized individuals who succumbed to the disease. Upon verification and validation, both categories of deaths are included on the Covid-19 Dashboard produced by the Ministry.
Standard protocols and guidelines are operationalized by the Management of the Sir Lester Bird Medical Centre once a patient has been warded at the hospital.
Once a hospitalized patient who tests positive for COVID-19 succumbs to complications related to the virus, the information is shared with the Ministry Headquarters for inclusion in the Dashboard along with an official announcement by the hospital.
Cases relating to discharged patients and individuals discovered to have been ill but did not seek medical attention and later succumbed to their illness are extensively investigated and reported on. In the first instance, a postmortem examination is conducted to determine the cause of death and a death certificate is issued, thereafter. If it is determined that the death is COVID-19 related, it is added to the Dashboard.
The principles of accountability and transparency are paramount to the Ministry of Health, Wellness and the Environment as it seeks to maintain public trust and confidence while ensuring that the highest standards of safety are maintained for the citizens and residents of Antigua and Barbuda. Once all the available information has been thoroughly processed by the respective health professionals and recommendations are made for the amendment of the Dashboard, immediate steps are taken to ensure that the accuracy of the information shared is uncompromised.
Consequently, eight (8) deaths that occurred in the community will be added to the subsequent dashboard.