County Medical Officer of Health for Tobago Dr Tiffany Hoyte has revealed the first pateint to contract the delta covid19 variant on the island was fully vaccinated.
The Ministry of Health reported on Wednesday that six new delta cases had been detected, including one in Tobago.
At the THA Division of Health, Wellness and Family Development’s virtual media briefing on Thursday, Hoyte said the patient developed symptoms on September 18 and was tested two days later.
She said in keeping with existing covid19 health protocols, the individual signed a quarantine order after being tested. He or she was confirmed as positive on September 23.
Hoyte said on Tuesday night her office received further confirmation that the samples tested positive for the delta variant.
Saying contact tracing is ongoing, Hoyte said the individual did not interact with other people for prolonged periods. She added the people interviewed so far have never tested positive for covid19, nor did they have a history of travel outside of the country.
“But we still continue to test all possible persons who may have been a source to this person. So we still continue the investigation at this time.”
Hoyte said the individual was surprised to learn they had tested positive for the delta variant despite being fully vaccinated.
She said while being fully vaccinated decreases the risk of infection, one can still contract the virus.
Hoyte urged Tobagonians to be wary of the presence of the delta variant in Tobago and get vaccinated.
“We have the delta variant among us, and part of the reason why we are encouraging persons to get vaccinated is that for persons who are fully vaccinated, it helps to greatly reduce the risk of developing severe disease. So once again, we want to encourage persons who may not have availed themselves of the vaccine to please do so.”
On Wednesday, Secretary of Health, Wellness and Family Development Tracy Davidson-Celestine urged Tobagonians to brace for further infections. She also renewed her appeal for people to get vaccinated.
Meanwhile, Tobago’s covid19 death toll has risen to 89 after a 59-year-old woman with comorbidities died from the virus overnight.
The island now has 16 new cases and 336 active cases.
In a statement, the division said there are 32 patients in state isolation, 299 in home isolation and five in ICU. Forty-one patients have bene discharged.
It said a total of 15,270 people have been tested for covid19 in Tobago. Of that number, 2,927 tested positive. There are 2,502 recovered patients.
To date, 21,287 people in Tobago have been partially vaccinated and 18,499 are fully vaccinated.