COVID-19 recovery numbers in Gibraltar have risen once again to 60 with active cases falling from 57 to 53.

The 399 random people have been swabbed, with 199 swabs pending results.

Of the 200 tests received from the systematic testing, eight people have tested positive for the Coronavirus.

It means approximately 4.5% of the community has been tested, with a figure of 1,440 revealed by the Deputy Chief Minister Joseph Garcia.

Some 229 people are currently in isolation, being reduced gradually from the peak of 360 on March 31.

To help with the eventual need of oxygen, the government announced that an oxygen plant within St Bernard’s Hospital is now operational, allowing the GHA to be self sufficient in this regard.

Plans were already underway to set it up to stop the hospital running out in a no-deal Brexit, so this makes Gibraltar even more independent.

Gibraltar’s 111 phone line has received over 4,100 phone calls for COVID-19 medical queries,

“Immediate medical advice is available to the call handlers to the call operators, and ultimately to you,” said Garcia.

“It is now 35 days since our first case was confirmed, but our message has remained the same – stay at home.”

Despite Olive Press questioning, the Government did not reveal how private landlords were reacting nor did they give much new information about this to the press.

Neither did the ministers reveal much more about the 98 medical workers in self-isolation or how they caught the disease, despite the obvious public interest.

At the beginning of the crisis they said they would be transparent about the flow of information, although they have also tried to stop widespread panic.

Warnings

The ministers reported that people continue to leave their homes for reasons other than exercising, shopping or essential activities in the social lock-down.

This includes those over 70 who are more vulnerable to the virus and ‘over 40 people’ have been escorted home, some of which are elderly.

“Some 30 people a day have been asked to go home and some arrests have been made,” said Garcia.

“The few could spoil it for the many, as controls may have to be tightened.”

This could lead to on-the-spot fines for people disobeying the rules set in place to save the lives of those more susceptible to the virus.

Three people were arrested yesterday by police using powers under the Civil Contingencies rules.

Two locals, Ian McIntosh, 42, and Lizanne Golt, 37, were detained for allegedly obstructing police while drunk at a home that was not their own on Lime Kiln steps.

The other individual is believed to be a homeless man who was accused of stealing £15 worth of food from a bakery near Convent place.

Police Checks2
CHECK: The social lockdown has been difficult for everyone concerned

Movement

A total of 27 Gibraltarians have been stranded around the world, with three in Australia, 15 in Morocco, eight in India and one in the United States.

They might be able to be brought home slowly by British Airways, who will be flying from the UK to Gibraltar from April 9 four times a week.

Seven passengers arrived from the UK to Gibraltar on Sunday in order to get into Spain.

They were declined entry into Spain to begin with, but were eventually cleared and were allowed into the pandemic hotspot.

Garcia reported that there were 67 air arrivals last week compared to the 3,448 arrivals last year.

Over 13,700 people crossed into Gibraltar last week, comparing to last year’s 171,000 in the same corresponding week.

Grateful

Garcia expressed his thanks to the elderly community for their ‘patience, ‘understanding and attention’ in this difficult time.

“You have endured lock-down for longer than any other group, and most of you are listening,” said the DCM.

“Three weeks is indeed a long time, but many of you have seen worse.”

“You have lived through the horrors of World War Two, the trauma of a forced evacuation, through the hardship of a closed border and the difficulties of years of blockade.”

“You overcame them with typical trouble Gibraltar spirit and re-emerged with a smile at the other end, and you will do so again, when all this is over.”

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