Jersey suffers first coronavirus death
A PATIENT in the care of Jersey's health service has died after contracting coronavirus.
The individual was in their 80s and had long-term underlying health conditions.
In a statement issued overnight on Wednesday, Health Minister Richard Renouf said: 'Sadly, this evening, I need to announce that a patient of ours who has been in our care for some time, has died after a long illness.
'This patient was in their 80s, with underlying long-term health conditions, on an end-of-life pathway, and was receiving palliative care.
'While they were being treated for their illness, and at the latter stages of their life, the patient contracted COVID-19 and has, sadly, died today, Wednesday the 25 March, in the care of Health and Community Services. All efforts are being made to contact their next of kin and I would like to offer my condolences at this sad time.
'We will not be releasing any further details about this patient, to protect their confidentiality.
'During the last week there has been a significant amount of misinformation circulating about our response to coronavirus. You may have heard it said that we are deliberately keeping important health information from Islanders. This has never been the case.
'We have always been clear and transparent, since this pandemic began, that we would publish the numbers of people who have been tested for COVID-19, the number of people who have contracted the virus and any other relevant information. And we will publish that information as soon as we have had it confirmed.
'I would respectfully ask, at this difficult time, that people avoid speculating on social media channels. It is important that we disseminate only accurate information, as tragically – in future – we will have to report on more deaths.'
Sixteen people in Jersey have so far tested positive for COVID-19, although there has been no update on numbers since Tuesday. Thirty cases have now been confirmed in Guernsey.
A quarter of the world's population are now living in some form of lockdown as countries try to slow the spread of the virus.
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