July 20, 2021
THE Ministry of Health reported 38 new COVID-19 cases and one additional death yesterday.
The latest deceased victim is a 76-year-old New Providence woman who died on July 18.
There are now 274 official COVID-19 deaths, with 22 other deaths under investigation.
Officials said 81 people are in hospital with the virus.
Meanwhile, COVID-19 positive employees and the death of a worker has prompted the closure of the Passport Office on Thompson Boulevard.
The office was closed Monday and will be closed today to allow the Ministry of Health’s surveillance team to conduct a proper contact tracing assessment of staff, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said.
“The ministry recognises that the summer months are a period of great demand for passport services and apologises for the inconvenience caused by the temporary suspension of services,” a statement noted.
“This year is particularly challenging as that normal summer demand is compounded by the pent-up demand brought on by COVID restrictions over the past year. The ministry is presently adopting innovative approaches to maintaining the efficient processing and issuing of passports, particularly through its online renewal portals should there be a further delay in these services after the 48-hour closure of the office recommended by the Ministry of Health.”
To meet “pent up demand,” some aspects of service may be taken off site, the ministry said. In addition, the Passport Office will soon introduce an appointment system to deal with first time applicants, in an attempt to better regulate the traffic accessing these services. The public is asked to stay tuned for announcements on these initiatives.
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