St. Croix Leading Latest USVI Covid Surge With 230 Cases; DOH Reinforces Importance of Public Testing
As the U.S. Virgin Islands experiences its latest surge in Covid-19 cases, the V.I. Dept. of Health is reinforcing the importance of public testing.
As of Tuesday there were 268 active Covid-19 cases territory-wide, according to D.O.H. data, with St. Croix accounting for a bulk of the active cases with 230, followed by St. Thomas with 36, and St. John with 2.
According to the health department, despite the use of at-home testing and the consequent under-reporting of active Covid-19 cases in the territory (positive results from home tests are not included in official data), the information gathered from the public health testing program is still valid.
“Most importantly the purpose of the surveillance is to identify trends,” the statement reads in part. Results from DOH testing as well as data from private-sector partners is combined to provide “a good sampling of what is going on in the community.”
Additionally, a positive result from an official test is required for patients to qualify to access treatments such as antiviral medication, DOH says, noting that people who test positive with an at-home kit should still have that result confirmed by a DOH test.
The Department of Health continued by urging residents to stay up-to-date with vaccinations and boosters, stating that vaccination remains the most effective protection of severe illness and death due to a Covid-19 infection.
Vaccines are available at the former old Caribe Home Center Building on St. Croix (# 35 Castle Coakley Unit 5), Monday through Thursday from 9am to 3pm. No appointments are needed for either COVID or influenza vaccines, but people can call Community Health on 340-718-1311, ext. 3760 or 3796.
On St. Thomas, vaccines are available at the Community Health Clinic on the second floor of the Schneider Regional Medical Center, 9 am -12 noon and 1:30pm-3pm Monday to Thursday. Appointments are needed for flu slots. Call 340-774-7477 to arrange.
The weekly testing event on Wednesdays in the VIPA parking lot on St. Jolin also offers vaccinations. Hours of service are from 12 noon to 3pm.
Children six months and older can receive vaccinations from the Maternal Child Health clinics – call 340-244-0016 (STX), 340-777-8804 ext 2600 (STT), or 340-776-6400 (STJ) for appointments.
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