CNMI reports 13th COVID-linked death, 122 new COVID-19 cases

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The CNMI Governor’s COVID-19 Task Force and the Commonwealth Healthcare Corporation have confirmed the CNMI’s 13th COVID-19-related deaths. More details will be provided later.

One hundred twenty-two (122) cases have been confirmed positive for COVID-19 on Dec. 27 and 28, 2021, bringing the CNMI total to 3,085 cases since March 28, 2020. The individuals have been isolated and are actively monitored.

As of Dec. 28, 2021, there have been 2,107 recoveries made, 677 active cases, and 9 (1 to be added later) deaths of the cases identified since Oct. 28, 2021.

As of Dec. 29, 2021, there were 17 individuals hospitalized as a result of COVID-19 (11 unvaccinated, 6 vaccinated; 2 on a ventilator); and 1 was discharged.

Unvaccinated individuals are at risk of serious illness from COVID-19, and unvaccinated individuals spread the virus at a higher rate than vaccinated individuals, thereby increasing the spread and risk of serious illness toward other unvaccinated individuals.

Vaccines are the best protection against the highly transmissible virus, and are readily available at the Multi-Purpose Center, Monday to Friday, 8 a.m. – 6 p.m., and Saturday, 8 a.m. – 4 p.m. Register for COVID-19 vaccines at www.vaccinatecnmi.com. Individuals age 18 or older are now eligible to avail of a booster shot; 16-17-year-olds can avail of a Pfizer-BioNTech booster shot.

The CHCC highly encourages unvaccinated individuals to get vaccinated or get a booster shot against COVID-19 to help prevent severe illness, hospitalization, and death. Data from small clinical trials show that vaccine effectiveness against COVID-19 infection is waning after the primary series, but protection remains high against severe disease and hospitalization.

Of the 122 cases, 13 were identified on Dec. 28 and 109 on Dec. 27; 28 were identified via contact tracing, 88 were identified via community testing, and 6 were identified via travel testing.

The vaccination statuses of the 122 cases identified are pending verification.

A total of 314 COVID-19 vaccine shots were administered on Dec. 29, 2021, resulting in 94.2% of the CNMI’s eligible population being fully vaccinated, which affords the community more protection against severe illness, hospitalization, and death.

Since Oct. 28, 2021, there have been 2,794 new cases, of which 1,434 were identified via contact tracing, 1,296 were identified via community testing, and 64 were identified via travel testing.

A total of 572 COVID-19 tests were conducted on Dec. 28, 2021, which comprises travel testing and surveillance testing but does not include DFEMS testing.

The CHCC Communicable Disease Investigation/Inspection team has already initiated contact tracing for the most immediate contacts of the newly confirmed cases, and this effort will continue until all probable cases are identified and tested.

Contact tracers will reach out to you if you are deemed high risk. The associated risk of infection depends on the level of exposure, which will, in turn, determine the type of monitoring. Establishing the level of exposure can be difficult and requires investigation.

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