Low number of positive cases triggers plans to lift restrictions

Gov. Lou Leon Guerrero has named a recovery team to guide her on lifting social distance restrictions and getting the island's economy back on its feet.

Gov. Lou Leon Guerrero Friday announced that she has named a recovery team to guide her on lifting social distance restrictions and getting the island’s economy back on its feet.

The announcement comes on the heels of a yet another report from the Department of Public Health and Social Services that nobody, on the civilian side of the fence, tested positive for COVID-19 on Thursday.

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Not just yesterday, but for the past four days, since Monday of this week, DPHSS has tested 106 samples and none of them were positive.

One case was diagnosed clinically as a “probable” positive and the DLS lab found another positive case on Tuesday of this week.

On Monday, April 13, 33 samples were tested by public health, none were positive. 1 case was clinically diagnosed. 134 confirmed.

On Tuesday, April 14: 30 tests were conducted, public health found no positives, DLS found one. 135 confirmed.

On Wednesday, April 15, 32 tested by public health and GMH. None were found to be positive for COVID-19.  The number of confirmed cases remains at 135.

On Thursday April 16, 11 were tested, none were positive. 135 confirmed.

There are only 21 active case of the disease on Guam.

Good News

The governor began her Friday morning FaceBook remarks by saying: “Some good news. We now have 97 recoveries. We maintain at 135 positives. Those numbers again of positive cases are going down. Yesterday, we had zero positives from public health so that is a good sign.”

And now that 97 people have recovered from the disease, there are only 33 active cases left on the civilian side of the fence.

“It has been obvious over the past few days that Guam has seen a significant decline in positive test results,” the governor said.

The governor addressed the drop in positive cases at the opening of her news conference this afternoon and noted that her physician advisory group believes the island is still struggling to contain the disease.

“While my physician advisory group says we are still in the containment, suppression and mitigation stages, I am taking the necessary steps to prepare for our recovery,” the governor said.

She announced that she has already formed a panel of recovery advisors that includes GEDA Deputy Director Ricky Hernandez, GEDA Chairman David John, her son Joaquin Cook who is the President of the Bank of Guam, along with Bank of Guam Vice President and Economist Joe Bradley and her Chief Medical Advisor Dr. Michael Cruz.

This panel said the governor will be looking at some of the guidelines announced by President Trump this morning in a conference call that she and the other state and territorial governors took part in during which Trump announced his Open America Again program.

“I will have the guidance and we can start looking at when we can lift the restrictions. And if we do do that, it’s very clear from the panel that it will be done gradually, and it will be done with great monitoring, contact tracing and testing,” the governor said.

No decisions have been made on what restrictions would be lifted first, or when.

Although we have seen a decline in positive cases among the civilian population on Guam, the Navy is reporting that the number of Roosevelt sailors who have tested positive continues to climb.

As of Thursday, 655 members of the aircraft carrier’s crew had tested positive for COVID-19. Six are now hospitalized, and one still remains in the intensive care unit of Naval Hospital Guam suffering from shortness of breath.