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HomeNewsLocal newsCOVID Cases Climb, Governor Recovers

COVID Cases Climb, Governor Recovers

Gov. Albert Bryan Jr. (Screen Shot from Government House)

Gov. Albert Bryan Jr. has left quarantine on St. Thomas after recovering from a mild case of COVID-19, Government House officials said Wednesday. Bryan’s illness, detected Jan. 9, came as the virus surged in early 2023 after an autumn slowdown.

As of Tuesday, the territory had 289 active cases, up from 268 on Monday. The majority of those are on St. Croix, where 253 were ill. Both the St. Thomas and St. Croix hospitals have two COVID patients in their care. The surge has the territory’s seven-day positivity rate at a whopping 18.85 percent after the Crucian Christmas Festival.

By contrast, in the first week of November infections rose from 44 to 61, with no one hospitalized.

On Tuesday, the territory recorded its 129th COVID-19-related death when a 64-year-old man died on St. Thomas. That same day, the Virgin Islands Health Department warned its infection numbers are well below the actual spread of the virus.

“The Department of Health wants to reassure the public that it is aware that the current active COVID-19 case count is higher than the data being collected via the daily public health testing efforts. Home testing is not included in the VIDOH published reports,” Health officials said.

Government House officials attributed Bryan’s mild symptoms and quick recovery to being fully vaccinated and urged all Virgin Islanders to keep current on their shots.

The most up-to-date vaccines and boosters are available on all three islands for adults and children.

On St. Croix, bivalent vaccines are available at 35 Castle Coakley, Unit 5, formerly known as the Old Caribe Home Center Building. They are available Monday through Thursday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. No appointment is needed for either the COVID-19 or influenza vaccine.

On St. Thomas, COVID vaccines are available in the Community Health Clinic on the second floor of the Schneider Regional Medical Center, Monday through Thursday, 9 a.m. to noon and 1:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. Anyone wanting a flu vaccine on St. Thomas is asked to call 340-774-7477 to arrange an appointment.

On St. John, vaccines are available during the Wednesday weekly testing event in the VIPA gravel lot in Cruz Bay from noon to 3 p.m.

COVID-19 and flu vaccines for children aged six months or older, in both districts, are available through the Maternal Child Health Clinics by calling 340-244-0016 on St. Croix, 777-8804, ext. 2600 on St. Thomas, and 340-776-6400 on St. John.

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