BASSETERRE, St.Kitts (Friday 27th March 2020)– Following an official announcement on Wednesday 25th March 2020 that St.Kitts-Nevis has confirmed its first two cases of the coronavirus (COVID-19), specifically on the island of St.Kitts, shoppers increasingly responded by going about various stores and supermarkets, buying food and other necessities.
Minister of State with responsibility for Health Wendy Phipps revealed that the two coronavirus cases involve a 57-year-old woman and 21-year-old male; both Kittitians who returned home on 18th March from New York “a jurisdiction which up until March 24th had recorder some 23,230 confirmed cases of COVID-19.”
According to her, “as of 11:03 PM on Tuesday 24th March”, the Federation recorded such first time information.
Both patients who reportedly arrived in the Federation were “tested on March 20th and have been in home quarantine ever since they returned to the Federation.”
This media house understands that these two individuals are a mother and son pair.
Shortly following the announcement made that afternoon, this media house visited one supermarket and was met with a busy scene of individuals buying items such as toilet paper, sugar, cereal, juice and water.
Speaking to two employees, it was disclosed that since the news of the outbreak persons there has been an increase of shoppers buying various items.
Meanwhile, images on social media claimed that there was a panic shopping scenario at a pharmacy located on Fort Street that day. Following a visit to area, this media house learnt from a customer that there was a line on the outside because that business place –which had its door closed-was only tending to three customers at a time.
Meanwhile, yesterday (Thursday), in speaking with a supervisor cashier at Best Buy supermarket, which is the island’s only 24-hour shopping center, she informed that there are plans ahead to cut the opening hours but such has not been finalised as yet.
She shared that the business place is currently practicing the recommended social distancing by allowing a certain number of shoppers at one time.
According to her, a number of items are in stock but with the increased shopping activity, it is uncertain how long items including paper towels and cleaning products will remain on the shelves.