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COVID-19 in the north

Over this past weekend the Orange Walk District recorded its 1000th case of Covid 19.  This figure, according to Rafael Castillo, the District Health Educator at the HECOPAB Orange Walk Office is a reflection of cases since the start of the pandemic.

Rafael Castillo, District Health Educator, HECOPAB Orange Walk: “We have over a thousand cases actually a thousand twenty four to be exact. I must however emphasize that the one thousand and twenty fur cases do not mean one thousand and twenty four active persons. We have about four hundred persons who are active with the active illness which represents about 40% of the sample of the total confirmed cases. I think what we are doing different is that fact that a majority of the people in Orange Walk district work out district they travel even within district working from the various communities in the rural areas coming into urban areas and other areas for employment purposes so we know that the movement of these persons is a risk it exposes persons to becoming infected with COVID-19 especially if they’re not practicing the guidelines such as wearing your mask adequately, physical distancing, and washing and sanitizing your hands as much as possible. I know in terms of the transportation in the buses which people travel and carpooling this is very very difficult but wearing your mask in these situations is definitely something that can help the persons to prevent from getting infected and we think that this is not necessarily happening and this is the reason why the cases are going up.”

The Orange Walk District now accounts for close to forty percent of all confirmed cases in the country.  Castillo spoke about the major cause of the increase in death rates in the district.

Rafael Castillo, District Health Educator, HECOPAB Orange Walk: “We know that we have increased number of deaths here as well here in the district which is mainly due to other factors such as comorbidities that related to complications from diabetes and hypertension and other illnesses. We know that this would have been an issue considering that here in the north we have higher rates of non communicable diseases than in other parts of the country so we ask people to if they’re not compliant with their medications to please do so, if you have not consulted you can all the hotlines to get guidance on how to reestablish yourself as part of a treatment protocol whether you are a diabetic or hypertensive this is very very important because we know the death rates are higher in people who have other medical issues.”

Currently, the Northern Regional Hospital has five Covid-19 patients hospitalized.