Grenada recorded its first COVID-19 related death on January 3 and the following day government appointed a six-member committee to examine the details surrounding the passing of the 72-year old male who arrived here on December 16, 2020.
The committee, which comprises chair Dr George Mitchell, deputy chair lawyer Leslie-Ann Seon, Dr Emma Herry-Thompson, Dr Beverly Nelson, Dr Shawn Charles and Dr Tyhesia Donald, has one week “to determine all of the facts and present a report to the Cabinet.” Contact tracing efforts as of January 4 determined that 27 persons were potentially exposed to this latest case.
Expressing condolences to the family and friends of the deceased man, Minister of Health Nicholas Steele, speaking at the post-Cabinet press briefing on Tuesday (Jan 05), explained why he called for the appointment of the committee.
“This is the first death Grenada has had related to COVID-19 and, as such, it is appropriate for us to have a team of individuals look into the entire circumstances and conditions etc,” he said, noting this is important for the family of the deceased and to strengthen protocols.
Acting Chief Medical Officer Dr Shawn Charles reported that Grenada has recorded 130 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and one death as of January 3, 2021. He confirmed that the man died at the General Hospital. In keeping with COVID-19 protocols, the body was cremated.
Just days before, on December 29, 2020 the Ministry of Health had recorded three new cases of COVID-19, all of which are connected to employees from the cluster at Sandals Resort. The government also reported on December 29 that during the last 36 hours, 29 more previously positive individuals were medically cleared. Another case was confirmed on Thursday, bringing active cases to four. The new case is a 48- year old female from the United States. Of the four current active cases, two are local residents connected to previously diagnosed cases and two are imported.
When asked about the cluster, Minister Steele declined to make any comment and instead, expressed condolences to the family and friends of the late Gordon “Butch” Stewart founder of Sandals Resorts International.