Information on the number of local patients who have recovered from covid-19 will soon be published, the Chief Minister has pledged, as he revealed that 16 islanders are being treated for the virus in hospital with a "very small number" in intensive care.
The announcement came in a statement issued by Senator John Le Fondré last night, providing an update on ongoing work to manage the spread of the virus in Jersey.
In it, he explained that the latest statistical modelling - due to be released today - showed that the island's progress was "good", and "indicates the measures we have implemented so far are working."
As of yesterday, there were 170 patients officially confirmed to have the illness, with 1,322 tests returning a negative result and 142 tests remaining outstanding.
Next week, he said that these statistics will be supplemented by recovery numbers, explaining: "I know Islanders have been asking for these statistics, and I hope they will help Islanders gain a better understanding of the island-wide picture."
Video: The Chief Minister's latest video update, which was published last night.
However, the Senator noted: "I must emphasise that we are at an incredibly early stage and a steepening of the curve may yet take place."
He later added a sombre warning that "sadly, more people will die", going on to explain that a group had been set up including representatives from across the Government, Police, faith groups and funeral directors, as well as the Deputy Viscount, Superintendent Registrar to ensure that the island is prepared to manage a spike in deaths and to ensure that those who die during the crisis are treated "with the upmost care and dignity."
"We are also preparing to provide additional mortuary space, if required, as part of the Island’s contingency plans for dealing with the coronavirus outbreak. This facility, which we are calling ‘The Sanctum’ will only to be used if Jersey’s existing mortuary space is not sufficient," he said.
Elsewhere in the speech, the Chief Minister issued a firm rebuke to reports of a lack of adequate PPE for frontline health workers.
"The protection of our frontline health workers, who are saving lives on a daily basis, is an absolute priority," Senator Le Fondré stated.
Pictured: Senator Le Fondré confirmed that PPE would be distributed to everyone in need in the island.
"We have made a substantial investment in PPE, and the first pallets of an increased stock of supplies arrived on the Island earlier this week. We have already begun distributing those supplies and more are on the way."
He explained that a dedicated PPE Coordination Group had been set up, which aimed to ensure "all those who need that equipment to carry out their role" receive it.
"The group will manage the demands on our supply, including prioritising the distribution of equipment, with advice provided by a specialist risk stratification group made up of clinical and logistic experts.
"This will ensure PPE is issued to island-wide organisations within a scope approved by Government to control the risk and spread of infection in the community."
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