CONFIRMED cases have gone up again to 120 with half of them being active and the other half now fully recovered.

Nearly 1,500 swabs have been taken in all of Gibraltar, with almost 1,200 results received and nearly 300 pending.

Of the random sample, 399 have now been taken, with 135 results pending and eight confirmed from the 264 received.

The latest random figures suggest that Coronavirus could be present in 3% of the population as opposed to the 2% originally believed by the government.

The great majority, 55, are recovering at home in self-isolation, with three in the Hillside elderly home who are doing well and one in the COVID-19 ward and COVID ICU respectively.

Medical Director Krish Rawal said that delays in the swabs were caused by the ‘very significant peak’ Spain is having at the moment.

“We have 20% of the predicted cases at this point,” said the Medical Director.

“That shows me very clearly, that social restrictions are definitely working, and it does really confirm our strategy to the slow the spread.”

He suggested the numbers could rise to as much as 600 being infected on the Rock, but this was being slowed down quite a lot.

Elderly risk

Rawal allayed fears that all the elderly would face problems if they caught the COVID-19 virus.

“If you’re in your 70s and over, there’s an 8% chance that you will come to home,” he said.

“The majority, 92% will actually not even know that you’ve had it and will now be immune.

“There was a gentleman who had 13 coexisting medical conditions, all of which were stable, and he went through this virtually unscathed by looking after himself.”

The Disability Society is now pressing for subtitles to be provided for the elderly in repeat press conferences on television to keep them up to date.

He also warned that smokers were more likely to get the virus and that masks would not be able to protect people from infection.

The Nightingale Facility is preparing itself for any sudden peak with a dress rehearsal to be held over the coming few days.

He confirmed that the oxygen plant was now providing around 35m3 of oxygen an hour, which would come to about three tanks.

Isola And Rawal
RESPONSIVE: Minister Isola and Medical Director Rawal today at Convent Place

Business matters

Minister for Commerce Albert Isola said that Gibraltar’s response has been ‘effective’ with donations having hit a million pounds.

He reported that companies who lie to get more money in the BEAT COVID scheme could get fined three times as much as they are claiming.

Isola said Taskforce Future was working hard ‘to start putting ideas on paper’ before discussions on the strategy the government would take.

“We have already identified a series of different opportunities, and we are excited about working with the private sector to make those a reality,” added Isola.

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