BU COVID Dash – Living with the Virus

Please see uploads for the week ending 25th February 2022. Barbados is now at a new “living with Covid” stage. The various ministries announced significant changes in their management of Covid this afternoon. As such, I am suggesting that I would submit only the enclosed graphs on a weekly basis, initially, but subject to modification if new substantive changes in the pandemic occur. All the indicators are trending in the right direction and we should all hope that they continue to do so – Source: Lyall Small

90 thoughts on “BU COVID Dash – Living with the Virus

    After two years of no Crop Over Festival due to the COVID-19 pandemic, masqueraders, calypsonians and others are jumping at the news the sweetest summer festival is on for 2022
    The announcement of the modified national celebrations came yesterday from Prime Minister Mia Amor Mottley, who told the country that while the details were still being worked out, some major changes to the format have already been given the green light due to the pandemic.
    Topping the list of changes was the decentralising of the festival’s highlights, Foreday Morning and Grand Kadooment event into eight venues.
    Promoters’ cry
    The Prime Minister’s decision came one week after some entertainment promoters and retailers complained that Government was cutting it too close in relation to making an announcement about the festival. They lamented at the time that every day the decision was delayed, the greater the likelihood that people would shift their plans to other destinations that were out of the blocks early with their carnivals.
    Yesterday president of the Bandleaders Association of Masqueraders Anthony Layne reacted by saying that while the organisation was pleased, he would reserve further comment until a meeting with the festival organiser, the National Cultural Foundation.
    Mottley said: “The big elephant in the room and the big question for all Barbadians is Crop Over. We are satisfied that we can have the season of Emancipation and a
    modified Crop Over season and I am sure that all Barbadians will be happy to hear that.
    “What does this mean in real terms? It means that the staging and execution of Grand Kadooment and Foreday Morning, which of course would be the two events that would give the Ministry of Health their greatest concern, we have now agreed that we would decentralise this. We will have at least eight venues that will accommodate persons wanting to play mas for Foreday Morning and Grand Kadooment.”
    The Prime Minister, who was speaking during a virtual COVID-19 press conference, disclosed that the finer details of the festival would be worked out during meetings slated to begin next week between stakeholders, the National Cultural Foundation (NCF) and the Ministry of Culture. She said those attending the Crop Over events would be required to follow the same COVID-19 protocols that govern fetes.
    This means that patrons would be required to be vaccinated or present a negative rapid antigen test taken no less than 24 hours before the event. Repeating her familiar refrain of knowing when to press gas and when to press brakes, Mottley cautioned that the hosting of the festival would hinge on the country’s COVID-19 situation not taking a turn for the worse.
    “The consultations as to the refining of the specific events would take place next week. Minister Shantal Munro-Knight, along with the CEO of the National Cultural Foundation, Mrs Carol Roberts-Reifer, will meet with all of the stake holder groups to be able to refine exactly the types of events that we will have. We are satisfied, having discussed with the Ministry of Health and the Covid Monitoring Unit, that it is possible for these things to take place safely, subject of course to their being no intervening event that makes our situation worse. It means that those persons attending the decentralised venues will have to abide by the same rules that persons attending fetes will adhere to over the course of the next few months,” she said.
    Mottley disclosed that based on her discussions with the Ministry of Health, she had every confidence that the events could be held safely even with the pent-up demand for such festivities locally and regionally.
    “We are happy for this because we know that after two years of no Crop Over and no release, people are more than waiting
    for this opportunity. However, as we said before, we would continue to live but safely so. We believe that if we have those eight venues properly fenced and with the protocols that we have announced, that we would be able to welcome not only all Barbadians here, but all of the visitors to our island who look forward to one of the first more-than-a-carnival type event that can happen in the region,” she said.
    Reigning calypsonian king William Classic Waithe said: “As long as there is a competition I will be there. Even if there is not a competition I will still release music,” he said in relation to the premier calypso competition of the festival.
    Veteran bandleader Chetwin Stewart said because of the short time Foreday Morning would be easier than Grand Kadooment.
    “This is what we were waiting to hear because people from overseas wanted to know if Barbados was an option this year. So we need to move full steam ahead.”

    Source: Nation

  2. Govt scraps PCR testing for visitors
    Visitors no longer need a PCR test as an entry requirement, as Government has decided to lower the protocols as of tomorrow, allowing for the acceptance of the rapid antigen tests at the border.
    This major change to the border-entry protocols was announced yesterday by Minister of Health and Wellness Ian Gooding-Edghill, who said with all of the metrices trending downwards, this was the next step in reopening the economy.
    Speaking at a virtual COVID-19 press briefing yesterday, he said the move would go a long way in relieving congestion at the airport. Additionally, intransit passengers with negative PCR tests or rapid antigen test would no longer be tested at the Grantley Adams International Airport and the band system would also be discontinued with the exception of the red band.
    However, he said the results of home tests kits would not be accepted.
    Gooding-Edghill said the risk of COVID-19 transmission from people visiting the island remained very low, noting that less than two per cent of the country’s cases in the last two months were detected at the border. He said there was zero multiplier effect as a result of cases coming through the borders, as these were quickly detected and isolated.
    “Based on the direction of the Emergency Operation
    Committee, the Ministry of Health and Wellness has decided that the testing protocols be changed. Accordingly, the rapid antigen test done within one day of arrival into Barbados will be accepted.
    This is expected to improve compliance by visitors . . . COVID cases among travellers to Barbados for January and up to February 22, were as follows. In January, of the 16 002 positive cases detected in Barbados, 300 travellers were detected at the border, which represents a risk of 1.9 per cent. Of the 9 204 positive cases recorded, 75 cases were detected at the border, which represents a risk factor of 0.8 per cent,” he said.

    Source: Nation

  3. Shift in testing focus
    Barbados is shifting its focus on COVID-19 testing.
    Chief Medical Officer The Most Honourable Dr Kenneth George revealed yesterday that public health officials would now be concentrating their testing efforts on people who may have been directly exposed to people already infected with the deadly virus.
    George said this yesterday during a press conference held to update the country on the Ministry of Health’s latest initiatives to battle the pandemic.
    In responding to a question about the low numbers of tests now as compared to a few months ago, George said that, led by the science, health officials had determined that, in fighting the highly infectious Omicron variant of COVID-19 it wasn’t feasible to try to test the entire population of Barbados.
    “When we were in the previous two waves of the virus, our mantra was know your status. That has changed. Concerning Omicron, there was a shortage of tests on the market because the exposure to the virus was high,” George explained. “We couldn’t test everyone. As each wave has come, we have shifted our focus. The mantra now is know your status if you’ve been exposed and have been in contact with a positive case. Everyone can’t be tested,” he added.
    Prime Minister Mia Amor Mottley, who also spoke at the press conference, said she was more than satisfied with the testing regimen and would continue to urge Barbadians to get vaccinated or, in the case of those who have had two shots, to get a booster.
    She revealed that the Ministry of Health had indicated that Barbados remained significantly above the threshold of testing at least 1 500 people out of every 100 000 in the population.
    Minister of Health Ian Gooding-Edghill, while saying the number of cases was unacceptably high overall, confirmed the ministry was satisfied with the recent downward trajectory in the positivity rate (percentage of infections from tests carried out) and the cumulative rate (number of infections per 100 000 people).
    Gooding-Edghill said that as of last week, the positivity rate had decreased from more than 25 per cent two weeks ago, to 17.5 per cent, while the cumulative rate was now only 514 cases per 100 000 people.
    “We are seeing no spike in cases and the positivity
    rate is declining. The situation is under control and we are getting better, but we will continue to take a cautious approach,” he said.
    He also said that the cases of travellers coming to Barbados positive for the virus were having a zero multiplier effect on infection of Barbadians, noting that in January only 300 people arrived and tested positive out of more than 16 000 passengers and this month only 75 out of more than 9 000.
    Head of Isolation Facilities Dr Corey Forde said officials at the Harrison Point facility in St Lucy had been able to successfully treat eight of 15 elderly people who had been in serious condition. Unfortunately, three of those patients, all over 80 years of age, passed away.
    Forde said there were now 22 in their primary and secondary care departments, which were being amalgamated. Of that 22, three are on ventilators and two have what would be considered a poor prognosis.
    In response to a question from the COVID-19 Public Advisor David Ellis, Forde said he was confident Barbados would also be able to deal with any challenges from the phenomenon known as long-COVID. He said Barbados was well placed to deal with any complications through its polyclinics, and private doctors would also deal with their patients. (BA)

    Source: Nation

  4. Cummins: Plans will ease airport flow
    Frowns are about to turn into smiles for arriving passengers at the Grantley Adams Airport.
    Minister of Tourism and International Transport Senator Lisa Cummins yesterday said the latest protocol changes would bring a quick end to bottlenecks that had become the norm at two gates of the airport and there would now be a smoother transition from aircraft to the arrivals hall.
    Cummins was speaking during a press conference yesterday at which it was revealed that arriving passengers would no longer have to present negative PCR test results at the airport, which would now be accepting negative antigen tests for the COVID-19 virus.
    She said there had been significant challenges with long lines and even longer waits at gates 14 and 16, where public health officials had set up a special facility to check PCR test results.
    The minister noted that the decision to move to antigen testing would not only assist Barbadians returning home but also gave the country the advantage of being chosen as a destination by tourists who had been finding it difficult to secure PCR testing at home.
    She said many Caribbean destinations had already made the move to antigen tests acceptance based on the available science.
    “In the last two weeks we have been working on the congestion issues . . . . A number of visitors from our primary source markets had expressed challenges with being able to access the required
    (PCR) tests, in particular, coming out of the North American market. In addition, a number of visitors arrived with the wrong test, which led to retesting,” she revealed.
    Cummins said with the need to spend in some instances as much as US$250 per person in a family to get a PCR test now removed, visitors could direct more spending to other things in Barbados.
    “The move from gates 14 and 16 back to the arrivals hall is a significant change in the process. We are now, from last night (Friday night) accepting passengers getting off their aircraft and heading to gates nine and 13 through the arrivals hall. For the majority of the passengers arriving . . . now, there will no longer be a need for the buses to take them to the arrivals hall.”
    Cummins said that in two weeks Barbados would be rolling out a new, advanced ED immigration form.

    Source: Nation

  5. My deepest gratitude
    Before I get into my true focus for today’s article, I wish to briefly address two matters.
    I must commend Republic Bank (Barbados) Limited for its recent decision to terminate the vaccine and testing policy it had introduced for unvaccinated employees at the beginning of February 2022. In explaining its decision to terminate the testing policy, Republic Bank cited the Government’s recent lifting of a number of restrictions, together with the Chief Medical Officer’s comments last week that safe zones were unsuitable within an Omicron environment.
    I applaud the bank for its willingness to review its policy and assess its usefulness, given the current science and data. This type of flexibility and willingness to continually review and adjust makes for good employers. Additionally, Dr Vidya Armogan, who last year implemented a safe zone initiative for his businesses and encouraged other private organisations to follow suit, also recently indicated his abandonment of the safe zones concept. He now recommends a more complete approach that focuses on the use of medical-grade masks and improved ventilation systems rather than only on the vaccination or testing issue.
    I hope that Rubis Caribbean, Terra Caribbean, Digicel Barbados and other companies who continue to enforce these testing mandates which are based on old science and old data will follow the examples of Republic Bank and Dr Armogan. These policies have no efficacy in an Omicron environment.
    Now on a more personal note.
    I did not anticipate (and could not have) that I would have received such overwhelming support and encouragement from going public about my experience with online harassment that later escalated to receiving hateful comments by mail.
    I was literally brought to tears by the collective show of support. I am so grateful to all who reached out to me by every medium possible to share prayers, words of encouragement and those who publicly advised that they stood with me. I have never felt so supported or shielded in my life.
    I wish to express special thanks to the Pan Africanists in Barbados who issued a statement in the news advising the perpetrator they would stand guard around me to prevent any physical or other harm coming my way. Further thanks to all who shared my video and contacted me with valuable information that I was able to share with the police to aid in their investigations.
    To the perpetrator I say this: I’m aware you read my columns because you mailed me a newspaper clipping of one of my recent articles on which
    you affixed your hateful comments. Since going public about the incident, I have learned there may be other “victims” of your abuse of the Barbados postal system to send anonymous hate mail to those with whom you disagree.
    Bullying behaviour
    This shows a pattern of predatory and bullying behaviour that will no doubt continue behind the shield of anonymity until it is snuffed out.
    For this reason, I intend to use the full arm of the law to prosecute this matter. I have no issue with you disliking me or disagreeing with views I have expressed. But we can disagree without threatening or doing harm to each other.
    You had no right to attack my sense of safety or security or my right to use my voice and platforms to express my own passions and opinions. I have continually advocated for the right of all persons, regardless of nationality, status, employment, race and gender to freely express divergent views in a respectful manner without fear of reprisal or harm. There is no beauty in this world without divergent views.
    There is no growth or advancement in us as individuals or as a society without divergent views.
    I will admit that your actions unsettled me and caused me some doubts. But I am more confident than ever that my voice is necessary and appreciated as a champion for the marginalised and the vulnerable in society, regardless of my difference in nationality. You have not seen or heard the last of me.
    Michelle M. Russell is an attorney at law with a passion for employment law and labour matters and a budding social activist. Email: mrussell.ja@gmail.com

    Source: Nation

  6. Wait-and-see for Crop Over stakeholders
    SOME STAKEHOLDERS in Crop Over are excited about having a festival this year, while others are eagerly awaiting direction from the National Cultural Foundation (NCF) on the way forward.
    Head of the Entertainment Association of Barbados, Rudy Maloney, says he will reserve comment until after meeting with Minister in the Prime Minister’s Office, Dr Shantal Munro-Knight, NCF chief executive officer Carol Roberts-Reifer, and the COVID Monitoring Unit.
    “There are a lot of things I can’t answer. The Prime Minister has opened for Crop Over to happen, but we don’t have dates or anything set for the festival, so there are a lot of things that still need to be answered based on the way forward,” he told the DAILY NATION yesterday.
    On Saturday, Prime Minister Mia Amor Mottley announced the return this year of the sweetest summer festival. However, she said while the details were still being worked out, some major changes had already been given the green light because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Topping the list is the decentralising of Foreday Morning and Grand Kadooment at eight venues yet to be named.
    No word on tents
    Eleanor Rice-Watkins, manager of All Stars calypso tent, said she had not heard any mention about the staging of tents, and would have to find out if the NCF was going to meet with them.
    “Some people are vaccinated, some people are not vaccinated and some don’t want to have the test, so as far as I am concerned, we should now be sitting and hear exactly what has to happen in relation to the tents to see how we can go forward. The persons in the community, they want to sit down and enjoy some entertainment because they need it.
    “Hopefully, this week now we should hear from the NCF. This is now March and it is late, but it depends on what we can come up with when we have discourse with the NCF. We also have to look at sponsorship, and if the sponsors are going to go with us, it may be at a scaled-down amount because we know we cannot now produce a show to satisfy a big set of numbers. I am going to be guided by the NCF as to how we go forward with things,” she said.
    Geoffrey Biggie Irie Cordle, the first non-Trinidadian to win the International Groovy Soca Monarch competition in Trinidad and Tobago, said he was happy the entertainers would finally make some money.
    “We were the last to get back to work, so I am happy that most of us are working again and Crop Over will assist us once more. I hope the promoters treat all artistes fairly and give everybody some work and compensate us accordingly,” he said.
    Cordle who said he was looking forward to the jump-ups in different locations.
    “I think what the Prime Minister said is accepted by everybody. I think …having Crop Over and having jump-ups in different parishes is a fantastic idea.
    Release music
    “I want to encourage the artistes to release music. We haven’t released any music for two years, so get in the studio and release songs, especially the young ones,” he added.
    Reigning Soca Monarch Michael Mikey Mercer said people were starved for some type of entertainment, but he, too, was still waiting to hear the details.
    “It cannot be as we know it at this point in time, but at least it is a step in the right direction and we will get a li’l out. I am still waiting to hear the specifics as to how the jumps will work. From what I understand, there will be some more specifics over the next few weeks, so I will be waiting to hear more on that before I make a solid presumption on how it’s going to go,” he said.
    Adrian AC Clarke, who tied for second place with Terencia TC Coward-Thompson in the last
    Pic-O-De-Crop competition in 2019, said he had every intention of releasing music, having not done so for the last two years. However, he said the announcement of the festival was too long in coming.
    “I have people overseas contacting me weekly because people want to plan their vacations, but if they don’t hear anything they will go elsewhere. For the Kadooment side of it, people are looking forward to that aspect. I think the eight locations is a good idea to cut down on the mass of people congregating.”
    However, Clarke questioned whether the tent format would be readily available.
    “How many tents would they have? How many nights will a tent be performing? Will it be worthwhile for some of the tents to go forward knowing they can’t have the numbers? Putting on a tent one night is fairly expensive,” he said.
    Reigning Festival Designer Of The Year, Kevin Small, said he had quite a number of stock sitting around that he would definitely pull out to ensure his band Fifth Element could be a part of Crop Over.
    “As we all know, Crop Over or any type of physical interaction will not be the same, so we just need to adapt and make the best of the situation. In an instance like this we would have to tap into what we used to do before, and maybe some bands may have to resort to just doing a T-shirt.
    “That would generate income for that particular mas’ camp, but at the same time give the general public and visitors alike the opportunity to come to Barbados and be able to enjoy themselves after being locked down for two years,” Small said.

    Source: Nation

  7. Tests down because returning Brits no longer need to be tested if they are vaccinated.

    Fewer tests mean fewer cases, Trump said that ever since.

    Hong Kong seems to be having problems if the media is to be believed..

    Whoa…Fauci Bombshell Leak

    FEBRUARY 28, 2022

    Following a devastating bombshell leak of his personal finances, Dr. Anthony Fauci, Director of the National Institute of Allergy And Infectious Diseases and WhiteHouse Cheif Medical Advisor will now be subject to a full Congressional investigation according to Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) after Senator Dr. Roger Marshall, M.D. obtained and released his records from the NIH over the weekend. With the likelihood of a GOP takeover of Congress growing greater each day, Fauci should be deeply concerned

    “Republican Kansas Sen. Roger Marshall, an ally to Jordan, released Fauci’s financial records over the weekend. The records appear to show that Fauci and his wife have a combined net worth of around $10 million. Records also showed that Fauci and his wife were paid tens of thousands of dollars to attend four galas and ceremonies — three of them virtual — during the pandemic.”

    Jim Jordan Presses Fauci For Answers – Sen. Marshall Delivers
    Congressman Jordan stressed the need for transparency from the highest paid public employee in the country arguing that these revelations and recently released emails prove there’s a “need to investigate Fauci.”

    “If the American people put us back in charge, we are definitely going to do this,” Jordan said, “Because we now know without a doubt that Dr. Fauci knew on Jan. 31 and Feb. 1 that this thing came from a lab,” Jordan argued. “The top scientists in the country were saying it came from a lab. One scientist says we got the notes now from the conference call on February 1st. One scientist says, ‘I don’t see how this can happen in nature, but it would be easy to do in a lab.’”

    “And yet just in a matter of days, they changed their position, write the article that appears in Nature of Medicine Magazine, which then gets cited in the now-famous letter The Lancet, which became the gospel for the fact that Fauci can go out and tell people it didn’t come from a lab when in fact they knew it did,” Jordan continued.

    “The interesting thing is. We point this out. We just learned this last week, the two doctors who were most adamant that this thing came from a lab early on: one is Dr. Kristian Anderson. On Jan. 31, 2020, he says this to Dr. Fauci in an email: ‘Virus looks engineered. Virus not consistent with evolutionary theory.’ So, he knew it came from a lab,” he added.

    “They changed their position,” Jordan argued. “And a few months later, guess what? They get an $8.9 million, both him and Dr. [Robert] Garry – the guy who said it couldn’t happen naturally.”

    Senator Marshall’s Weekend Bombshell
    Senator Marshall’s office wrote in a press release dated Jan. 15th,

    “U.S. Senator Roger Marshall today obtained Dr. Anthony Fauci’s previously unpublished financial disclosures from the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The NIH released the documents to Senator Marshall after a HELP hearing earlier this week where Dr. Fauci misled the American people and said, “My financial disclosures are public knowledge, and have been so. It is totally accessible to you, if you want it. To the public.” Since the disclosures were not public, on Wednesday, Senator Marshall sent a letter to Dr. Fauci formally requesting his un-redacted financial disclosures by 5:00pm Friday, January 14th. In response, Dr. Fauci produced these previously unpublished documents.

    “Dr. Fauci lied to the American people. He is more concerned with being a media star and posing for the cover of magazines than he is being honest with the American people and holding China accountable for the COVID pandemic that has taken the lives of almost 850 thousand Americans,” said Senator Marshall. “Just like he has misled the American people about sending taxpayers dollars to Wuhan, China to fund gain-of-function research, about masks, testing, and more, Dr. Fauci was completely dishonest about his financial disclosures being open to the public – it’s no wonder he is the least trusted bureaucrat in America. At the end of the day, Dr. Fauci must be held accountable to all Americans who have been suing and requesting for this information but don’t have the power of a Senate office to ask for it. For these reasons, I will be introducing the FAUCI Act so financial disclosures like these are made public and are easily accessible online to every American.”

    The investigation of Dr. Fauci and the unraveling of the Coronavirus’ origins could very likely reveal the most devastating scandal in the history of humanity.

  9. GPMarch 1, 2022 7:33 PM




    If you are working in base 2, 11 = 1×2+1 = 3 to base 10

    But it was also the subject of a song way back when by Ernie Smith.

  10. Ok. I just put 2 X $100 in my purse. Will let you know tomorrow if there is $300 in my purse. Thanks for the math lesson guys.

    A good night to you.

  11. 11 to the base 2 is 3 to the base 10 but it is not just 1+1
    1+1 in base 2 result in 10 to the base 2 which is 2 to the base ten

  12. john
    1 +1 is often = 3 when exhibiting drugs .this is called synergy
    you can do this deliberately by chosing two drugs with different mechanisms of action but similar effects
    e.g to treat hypertension asthma or gastritis or irritable bowel syndrome or severe pain or an inflammatory reaction

    sometimes you might do this accidentally too.

    i got the result I expected when I asked the question including the foolish answer from the idiot
    you bright mathematicians saw it as a math problem and gave enlightenment to me
    now I have enlightened you
    the moron could not help but expose their idiocy, and brought nothing of value to the table–as is usually the case

  13. “john
    1 +1 is often = 3 when exhibiting drugs .this is called synergy
    you can do this deliberately by chosing two drugs with different mechanisms of action but similar effects
    e.g to treat hypertension asthma or gastritis or irritable bowel syndrome or severe pain or an inflammatory reaction”

    Great answer. But I hesitate to put a numerical score.

  14. re Great answer. But I hesitate to put a numerical score.

  15. 11 to base 2 represents a single 2 to the power of 1 plus a single 1 to 2 to the power of 0.

    Anyway you look at it 11 is actually 1+1 which is 3.

    If 11 to base 10 is computed, it is a single 10 to the power of 1 plus a single 10 to the power of 0.

    So, in some cases, 1+1 can also be computed as eleven.

  16. Base
    You do not add digits like that
    It seems as if you forgot unit, tens hundreds
    Not 11=1+1
    Don’t come here telling me that 111 is 3

    The same thing in base 2
    Unit, two four, right..
    here 10=to the base 2=2 to the base ten
    You distort greatly…

  17. You need to stop or I will be writing
    Cambridge and asking them to review the grading of papers around 1974 to 76. Some mistakes were made

  18. Why must these matters be discussed in the glare of the public all the time?

    PSVs seek clarity

    Query on whether three-foot protocol applies to those standing
    by RACHELLE AGARD rachelleagard@nationnews.com
    STAKEHOLDERS in the transport sector have welcomed the return to maximum ridership, but at least one entity is calling for clarity when it comes to standing passengers.
    Last weekend, Government announced under the new Emergency Management (COVID-19) Directive, which came into effect on Monday, that standing passengers will again be permitted in public service vehicles (PSVs) according to their carrying capacity.
    Communications officer of the Alliance Owners of Public Transport, Mark Haynes, told the MIDWEEK NATION yesterday he could not say if the three-foot distance protocol will applied to standing passengers or not.
    “If that is the case, you would not have full capacity standing either; that will not work because of the configuration of the minibuses. The three feet apart will not always work for us, except the Government resumes the full hundred per cent capacity. I know there are some concerns where some people don’t want to rub next to each other. That is a legitimate concern given we are still in a COVID environment, notwithstanding the sector has had debilitating challenges, and we are trying to get back on our feet financially,” he added.
    However, Haynes said the resumption of full capacity was a step in the right direction and urged passengers and operators to keep adhering to COVID-19 protocols.
    “We have been reeling from the onslaught of COVID-19 for some two years now . . . . Since we are still in a COVID environment, it is particularly important that protocols are still followed, specifically wearing of masks as long as you’re standing. I hope this will redound to the benefit of the PSV sector as we get going.
    “Safety remains our hallmark and we are not going to deviate from safety. Where commuters’ hands can be sanitised, it will be
    done. Already, we have some dispensers affixed to some vehicles, particularly in the minibuses. But I urge all vehicles in the sector to submit themselves at the various terminals to be sanitised as they disembark the commuters, especially those who run out of the Constitution River Terminal,” he said.
    Tried their best
    Executive member of the Transport Augmentation Programme (TAP) Committee, Kristian Yearwood, said they tried as best to space passengers but were working with a vehicle with limited space inside.
    “We had been kind of restricted in that aspect for a few months, so the actual fact of us being able to carry more passengers means that we will be able to generate more revenue. For example, when we have persons sitting, there is no way you can sit three feet apart; it can’t happen. I think that is a question we will have to ask the Ministry of Health, but we will continue to follow basic protocols,” he said.
    Yearwood said they also welcomed the return of children to face-to-face classes as it accounted for 43 per cent of their ridership.
    “School has not been out for the majority of the last 12 months. In TAP, we have regular-paying adults, pensioners and school passengers and have different tickets for different passengers, which allow us to track the data to see where the numbers are being generated from. We are grateful not only for return to full capacity but also for putting all plans in place for this segment to return as it is a very important customer segment for us,” he said.

    Source: Nation

  19. @ David

    I came to the ‘personal realization’ we have to live with COVID-19 until the pandemic ends.

    My wife complained of feeling unwell and I suggested she should visit a doctor. She believed she had a cold.

    On Tuesday, February 24, I left home to do some work and when I returned later in the evening she wasn’t feeling any better. I again told her let’s go to the doctor, but once again she declined to do so.

    Later in the night she told she wanted to go to the hospital. Unfortunately, when we arrived there, the nurse told me I could not go in with her because the A&E was crowded. As she laid on the stretcher about to go in, she looked at me and her eyes welled up. I touched her feet and told her to relax, everything will be okay.

    On Thursday, February 25, I got the news that she wasn’t doing too well. Her oxygen levels were dropping. Later in the day I was told she had contracted COVID-19 and the doctors controlled her blood pressure, her heart was beating normally, but they were concerned about her sugar level.

    The next day, I was happy to hear the doctors say there was a slight improvement in her condition.
    But, sadly, later in the night, they said “things don’t look too good.” But, we continued praying and hoping for the best.

    Early Saturday morning I received the sad news that my wife passed away.
    As at today, March 4, the news has not sank in as yet. I have been unable to do anything since then, not even work or eat.

    I decided to come to BU today, not looking for sympathy, but to remind us of the reality that we have to live with COVID-19 and the effects thereof……. thereafter.

    At the end of the day, LIFE MUST GO ON.

  20. @Artaxerxes

    My condolences to you and your family,

    The worst thing about this COVID thing is not being able to properly be with your loved one at the end to give that emotional support to help them fight.


  21. @Artax
    I wish you well.
    May the Good Lord give you and your family peace and the strength to endure and triumph in your time of sadness.

  22. Sincere condolences Artax.
    Praying that you can be strong enough to face this huge setback and challenge.

  23. @ Critical Analyzer, TheOGazerts and Bush Tea

    Thanks for offering your condolences.

    What surprised me is the fact that she was not listed among those persons who were reported as having died last Saturday of COVID-19.

    But, the doctors said she contracted a bacterial virus on her lungs…… something that seems to have become commonplace recently at the QEH.

    CA, you are correct. We could not be with her when she was ‘on her way out.’ However, what will be forever etched in my memory was seeing look at me with tears in her eyes as she was about to be taken into the hospital.

    It was an extremely ’emotionally sad’ experience which I believe I won’t be able to forget.

    You’ll have to experience it to understand how I felt.

    Once again, thanks.

  24. Amm
    Artaxerxes uh need to correct yuh dates those dates does not compute with time frame of ocuurances

  25. @angela cox March 4, 2022 8:07 PM
    The days of the weeks are correct based on his timeline but the date is off so Tuesday 22nd, Thursday 24th and Saturday 26th would be the corrections.

  26. @ CA

    I made an honest mistake with the dates, it could happen to anyone.

    What I meant to ‘say’ was she went to the QEH on Tuesday, February 22 and died Saturday morning, February 26.

  27. @Artaxerxes March 4, 2022 6:04 PM

    Dear Artaxerxes: I am so sorry to hear this. My sincerest condolences.

  28. I join with fellow bloggers in offering deepest condolences to u brother. And may ur wife rest peacefully in the bosom of her faith.


  29. Artaxerxes

    I understand that in times of sorrow things we want to say might not coming out in clear and coherent context
    However your last blog on the morning of February 26 the 2022 9.07am was clear and precise although / and nothing was mentioned of your dire situation / circumstance

    ArtaxFebruary 26, 2022 9:07 AM

    @ David

    I keep ‘saying’ BU is an amazing forum.

    Leaders all over the world, including those countries that received loans or financial aid from China, have condemned Russia’s military action against Ukraine.

    But, an idiot keeps coming to this forum to give people the impression that Mia Mottley committed an UNPARDONABLE SIN when she expressed similar sentiments and that Barbados will suffer dire consequences as a result.

    These silly ‘political yard-fowls’ have an uncanny penchant for politicizing every issue. They are prepared to enter into the ‘realm of absurdity’ to display ‘genuine idiocy’ and criticize for the sake of criticizing.
    Kind of baffling that after going through those hard moments u still had time and enough concentration to put fingers to key board and interject your perspective on the political happenings connected to war
    My pray are with u and other family members

  30. ARTAX

    Precious in the sight of the LORD Is the death of His saints…..Psalm 116 v15

  31. Scrapping PCR testing ‘a key step’
    By Tony Best
    Barbadian scientist in the United States Dr Wayne Greaves believes Government’s decision to scrap the PCR testing requirement for visitors coming in is a “reasonable” step that strikes an “appropriate balance”.
    He said it would help to protect Barbadians against any further spread of the highly infectious and deadly coronavirus while allowing for a much- needed re-opening of the country’s moribund economy.
    In a major change to the border entry protocols, Minister of Health, Ian Gooding-Edgehill recently said that with the COVID-19 metrics trending downward, the new move was really a key step in the re-opening the economy. While Greaves backed the decision, he noting “it was a reasonable approach designed to move Barbados forward by opening its economy a bit more,” he quickly insisted that requiring proof of vaccination status must remain a key element of the protocol.
    “That to me is still essential.
    In fact, if it were left to me and I know it isn’t easy to implement or require, but ideally because of the Omicron variant and its high infectious nature in the island and around the world, I would have required two doses of the vaccine and the booster shot as well. I am definitely in favour of dropping the PCR testing on arrival in Barbados.”
    Greaves, a former professor of medicine at Howard University who was also trained at McGill University in Canada, Vanderbilt University and the U.S. Centres for Disease Control in Atlanta, said “when you are looking at businesses coming into a country, it is reasonable to impose restrictions needed to make the place safe, for everyone, including visitors.
    Still take precautions
    “I have looked at the continuing decline in the number of cases and deaths and I think that at the present time, scrapping the PCR test is a reasonable step to take in order to be a bit more open. People whose immune system was compromised and who have chronic medical conditions that would put them at risk if exposed to the virus should still take precautions. But for people who are travelling, are presumably healthy and have been vaccinated, I think the scrapping of the test is reasonable.
    “I think Barbados is balancing the situation appropriately,” Greaves added.
    He said Barbados should continue to look at its own situation with the virus and not with the entire global picture when making decisions, given the progress of the virus in the country.
    “You can use the world as a reference point but we must be cognizant of what’s going on in Barbados as distinct from say Hong Kong where there is a
    raging epidemic,” Greaves added.
    Trending downwards
    “The United Kingdom has thrown caution to the wind and Hong Kong is now contemplating a lockdown because of the large number of cases. But Barbados doesn’t have to copy what a particular country does” to deal with its situation, he contended.
    “It must consider its own number of cases or deaths and where the curves are going.
    In Barbados, the curves are trending downwards for the number of cases and deaths.
    That is a good sign. In Hong Kong they are not.”
    As Gooding-Edgehill explained it, the action regarding the PCR test for visitors would help relieve congestion at the airport. In addition, intransit passengers with negative PCR tests or rapid antigen tests would no longer be tested at the Grantley Adams International Airport.
    The band system would also be discontinued, with the exception of the red band. He also said the results of home test kits would not be accepted.
    The Minister insisted that the risk of COVID-19 transmission from people visiting Barbados remained very low, pointing out that less than two per cent of the island’s cases of infection were detected at the ports of entry.

    Source: Nation

    • Enclosed are Covid Charts to 4th March 2022. Charts show a very slight uptick this week. Will check next week (DV) to see if the cases continue in the same vein – Source: Lyall Small

  32. Questionable restrictions
    Last week a colleague invited me to lunch. I haven’t gone out to lunch in more than two years because I am not comfortable taking off my mask in public places. However, with Omicron and having recently recovered from COVID-19, I am now more inclined to try activities that I avoided for the better part of the pandemic.
    So when my friend invited me to lunch, I actually said yes. Moments later he messaged to say the restaurant would only allow fully vaccinated patrons. I laughed out loud and pondered on the logic behind this restriction. The possibility still exists of being infected by other vaccinated maskless patrons, so what’s the point of the restriction?
    If the restaurant or any other business wishes to reduce the risk of transmission on their premises, then the focus should be on testing all patrons, rather than simply restricting access to the vaccinated.
    This brings me to the new protocols which the Government recently introduced under the new Emergency Management (COVID-19) (Protocols)(No. 2) Directive, 2022.
    These directives, though more lenient than previous versions, contradict some of the recent messaging of the Government and the Chief Medical Officer (CMO).
    Recently The Most Honourable Dr Kenneth George advised that “the concept of safe zones is difficult to do in an environment where you expect a lot of the population to be exposed… we cannot transpose safe zones into an Omicron environment”. Therefore, the previous safe zone concepts of giving automatic entry to vaccinated persons without them having to be tested can no longer work in an Omicron environment. The focus has rightly shifted to ensuring that all patrons are tested prior to entry.
    Testing requirements
    For this reason, I understand why the new directives have imposed testing requirements for vaccinated persons who wish to attend public events. However, the directives fail to have a consistent testing policy.
    In some instances, the directives completely exclude unvaccinated persons from events, while in others, unvaccinated are allowed once they submit a negative test result.
    This makes no sense.
    Pursuant to section 5 (3) of the directives, pleasure craft and private boats can operate at 50 per cent capacity for private cruises once the passengers are fully vaccinated or produce a negative result of a rapid test taken 24 hours prior.
    Yet, party cruises are restricted to patrons, staff and performers who are fully vaccinated and tested. So the unvaccinated are completely excluded from party cruises rather than given the option to present a negative test. What’s the difference between a vaccinated person
    who presents a negative test and an unvaccinated person who is also negative?
    A further contradiction is seen in section 7 (1), which allows unvaccinated patrons to attend public events once they produce a negative test result. But the service providers, staff and performers at these same events must be fully vaccinated and produce a negative tests. So those who earn a living from the entertainment industry are prevented from earning simply because they are unvaccinated, while patrons get the option of attending these same events once they produce a negative result. This is unjust. One of the main reasons for reopening the entertainment sector was to allow those in the industry the chance to earn after a long hiatus. The directives have the opposite effect for many of them.
    Furthermore, what’s the rationale for excluding any unvaccinated patron who is willing to be tested prior to entry? And let’s not speak about the failure of the directives to distinguish between the vaccinated whose second shot was more than six months ago and are no more protected than the unvaccinated.
    These restrictions within the Directives are punitive rather than grounddd in science and simply represent another form of vaccine coercion. Since the focus has shifted to testing, all persons should be given the option of submitting a negative test as a precondition for attendance.
    Having said that, I believe persons who choose to remain unvaccinated must accept there will continue to be consequences for that choice. This may mean eating at home or partying within the comfort of one’s own living room.
    Michelle M. Russell is an attorney at law with a passion for employment law and labour matters and a budding social activist.
    Email: mrussell.ja@gmail.com

    Source: Nation

    • @Hants

      You would have thought there was consultation between stakeholders about an important change as proposed by the MOE?

  33. Test Cricket coming up.

    Planes been busy today.

    Cases may go up in a week or two after first Test, March 16 to 22.

    UK still requires testing if you are not fully vaccinated.

    “If you do not qualify as fully vaccinated for travel to England, you must take a COVID-19 test before you travel to England from abroad. If you do qualify as fully vaccinated for travel to England, you do not need to take a test before travel.”

    Some of my family members have it.

    They are pretty sure it came through contact among the younger generation out partying and not water!!

    No flooding here but problems in UK so the Brits will be bringing it with them..

    Brazil seems to have caused their cases to fall remarkably with Ivermectin despite their problems with floods.

    Possibly if people in Brazil are taking it they are not being hit hard by COVID if they get it and don’t see the need to test.

    Some Florida Doctors are using it too.


  34. Faucci seems to have disappeared.

    De Santis claims he is in witness protection but I think he is joking.

  35. 175 new Covid19 cases, 131 adults, 44 children, 16.5% infection rate from 1056 tests done on Tuesday 8th March, 2022. 22 new people received their first vaccine.

    • The numbers continue to fall.

      A total of 128 people (52 males and 76 females) tested positive for COVID-19 from the 1,057 tests carried out by the Best-dos Santos Public Health Laboratory on Wednesday, March 9.

      The cases comprised 30 persons under the age of 18, and 98 who were 18 years and older.

      There were 49 people in isolation facilities, while 1,214 were in home isolation.

      As at March 9, the virus had claimed 323 lives.

      The public health laboratory has carried out 595,351 tests since February 2020, and recorded 56,679 COVID-19 cases (26,290 males and 30,389 females).

      Under the National Vaccination Programme for COVID-19, the total number of persons with at least one dose is 160,552 (70.3 per cent of the eligible population). The total number of fully vaccinated persons is 150,220 (55.4 per cent of the total population or 65.8 per cent of the eligible population). The eligible population represents those persons who are 12 years and older.

  36. UK cases showing an increase so I would expect to see our cases follow the upward trend shortly.

    I reckon most of the tests being done are on UK returnees who are not vaccinated so we seem to be sampling the UK population.


  37. OOPS!!

    Got the wrong ‘un

    If vaccination levels are rising in the UK you would expect to see less returnees being tested but a higher positivity ratio to reflect the rise in the UK.

    It is possible also to see numbers tested here fall.

    Time will tell


  38. Check Australia, Sydney Harbour.

    If they are using this seawater for desal, they are going to be in deep doo doo.

    Israel gets 55% of its water from desal of water taken from near shore waters.

    Their huge spike has plateaued and returned to normal … until the next set of floods.

  39. I have been keeping track of cases as a percentage of the number tested and the number tested.

    The number of cases has shown a decline, but when expressed as a percentage of the tested ,the decline is negligible.

    However, the decline in the number of tests tells me that the number of suspected infections is on the decline. I see this as a positive, but the relative slow decline in the percent infected is still a concern.

    Roughly 20% of the population was infected and the fact that we now hover at 16% makes me wonder what and who we are testing.

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