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A residential area in Trinidad and Tobago's capital city of Port of Spain (Photo: World Nomads courtesy iStock/jaysunlp)

T&T expects COVID-19 surge following elections

A residential area in Trinidad and Tobago's capital city of Port of Spain (Photo: World Nomads courtesy iStock/jaysunlp)

Trinidad and Tobago is bracing for more coronavirus (COVID-19) cases following its general elections on Monday.

Trinidad and Tobago is bracing for more COVID-19 cases following increased movement and gatherings over the past few days. (Photo: An aerial view of Port of Spain Trinidad and Tobago/ london.ac.uk)

Dr Avery Hinds, director of the epidemiology division at the Ministry of Health, said an increase in cases is expected due to increased movement and gatherings over the past few days.

He said there has been a steady increase of cases each day, with a high of 22 being recorded.

The director said there have been breakouts in clusters including schools, workplaces and gatherings.

Prime Minister of Trinidad and Tobago Dr Keith Rowley led the People’s National Movement to another term in Government following Monday’s election. (Photo: Trinidad & Tobago Guardian)

“At this point in time we have identified that certain settings are the highest risk for transmission. We said that the home setting sometimes the workplace and definitely those close gatherings in bars and other gathering places, religious organisations, religious gatherings formal and informal, those are in the highest risk scenarios,” Dr Hinds said at a press conference this morning.

“One of the things we need to clarify or get a better understanding out to the public is what we mean by pending epidemiological investigation. When we begin an epidemiological investigation, we don’t walk up to someone and scan the QR code on their foreheads and get all their epidemiological information. It’s a process where we ask about activities, we ask about interactions and we ask about locations. And in so doing we get some idea of who they might have exposed or who they might have exposed,” he said.

Of the 161 actives cases currently on the twin-island republic, Dr Hinds said 64 per cent are linked to existing clusters.

Over the election campaign period, which saw the Keith Rowley-led government win another term, there were several reports of COVID-19 protocols being breached.

Trinidad and Tobago has recorded 308 COVID-19 cases, resulting in eight deaths.