Thu | Aug 5, 2021

UK traveller dies from COVID days after arrival

Published:Tuesday | January 5, 2021 | 12:17 AM

One of 20 persons who tested positive on the last flights from the United Kingdom (UK) allowed to land in the island before a travel ban took effect has died.

According to the health ministry, the deceased is a 77-year-old male of Jamaican decent, who resides in the UK.

A new variant of the coronavirus discovered in the UK, which has proven to be more easily transmitted, has been sending waves of panic across the globe just as newly approved vaccines had been spawning hope for the end of the deadly pandemic.

When the flight with more than 300 persons landed at the Norman Manley International Airport days before Christmas, 20 persons were discovered to be COVID-19-positive. Further tests revealed that four of the travellers had the new variant strain.

“The patient was in state isolation and remained stable until late December, when he developed symptoms and was admitted to the Cornwall Regional Hospital,” the health ministry reported yesterday. “His condition further deteriorated, and was listed among the critically ill COVID-19 patients.”

The health ministry further said that the passenger, who died on Sunday, was not among the four travellers found to have had the variant strain of COVID-19.

On the weekend, health officials said that the number of Jamaicans inoculated with the COVID-19 vaccine could be bumped up from the initial expectation of one to five per cent of the population in the second quarter.

Sixteen per cent of the population is expected to be vaccinated by the end of the year.

Up to Monday, Jamaica had recorded 13,203 cases of COVID-19 with 304 fatalities.