COVID-19 pandemic in the Cayman Islands

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COVID-19 pandemic in the Cayman Islands
Virus strainSARS-CoV-2
LocationCayman Islands
Arrival date12 March 2020
(2 years, 5 months and 3 days)
Confirmed cases27,594 [1]
Fatality rate0.11%
Government website

The COVID-19 pandemic in Cayman Islands is part of the ongoing global viral pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), which was confirmed to have reached the British Overseas Territory of the Cayman Islands in March 2020.


On 12 January 2020, the World Health Organization (WHO) confirmed that a novel coronavirus was the cause of a respiratory illness in a cluster of people in Wuhan City, Hubei Province, China, which was reported to the WHO on 31 December 2019.[2][3]

The case fatality ratio for COVID-19 has been much lower than SARS of 2003,[4][5] but the transmission has been significantly greater, with a significant total death toll.[6][4] From 19 March, Public Health England no longer classified COVID-19 as a "High consequence infectious disease".[5]



On 26 February 2020, Mexican authorities granted permission for a cruise ship registered in Malta to dock in Cozumel, Quintana Roo, because the ship was carrying a passenger presumed to be infected with the coronavirus. The ship was previously denied access to ports in Jamaica and the Cayman Islands.[7] Two cases of flu were found.[8]

On 12 March 2020, a 68-year-old Italian man in critical condition, who was transferred from the cruise ship Costa Luminosa to a hospital in the Cayman Islands on 29 February due to heart issues, was announced as the first confirmed coronavirus case.[9][10][11][12] His death was announced two days later.[11]

In August of 2020, after community transmission was eliminated, most restrictions, including face mask requirements, were dropped.[13]

On 15 November 2020, a second COVID-19 death occurred. The person was a resident of the Cayman Islands who had tested positive after returning from travelling abroad and remained in isolation for some time. After the person's symptoms worsened, they were admitted to the Cayman Islands Hospital on 4 October. It was stated by the Ministry of Health that the person fell into the category of persons at a high risk of developing COVID-19 complications.[14]

On 17 December 2020, Mercer University pre-med student Skylar Mack, 18 years old, of Loganville, Georgia, in the United States, and her boyfriend Vanjae Ramgeet, 24 years old, of the Cayman Islands, were sentenced to four months in prison for her violating the island's mandatory two-week quarantine COVID-19 restriction two days after arriving from the United States, and for him aiding and abetting her.[15][16][17] She had called the health department to have her location tracker bracelet loosened the day before her breach, and she subsequently removed it.[17][16] Judge Roger Chapple said during their sentencing that the decision to violate safety measures was born of "selfishness and arrogance," and that Mack spent seven hours in public at a crowded event without a face mask or social distancing.[16][18] Three hundred cases and two COVID deaths had been reported in the country to that point in time.[19] The sentence was later reduced to two months.[20] On 15 January 2021, she was released from prison.[21]

Despite the pandemic, a general election were held on 26 May 2021.[22]

On September 24, 2021, despite a high vaccination rate, the islands reintroduced pandemic restrictions including mandatory wearing of face masks indoors and gathering restrictions, due to a massive spike in locally transmitted cases.[23] Over 10% of the islands' population would go on to be infected after this, despite the islands largely keeping the pandemic out before this time.

See also


  1. ^ a b c "Cayman Islands COVID - Coronavirus Statistics - Worldometer".
  2. ^ Elsevier. "Novel Coronavirus Information Center". Elsevier Connect. Archived from the original on 30 January 2020. Retrieved 15 March 2020.
  3. ^ Reynolds, Matt (4 March 2020). "What is coronavirus and how close is it to becoming a pandemic?". Wired UK. ISSN 1357-0978. Archived from the original on 5 March 2020. Retrieved 5 March 2020.
  4. ^ a b "Crunching the numbers for coronavirus". Imperial News. Archived from the original on 19 March 2020. Retrieved 15 March 2020.
  5. ^ a b "High consequence infectious diseases (HCID); Guidance and information about high consequence infectious diseases and their management in England". GOV.UK. Archived from the original on 3 March 2020. Retrieved 17 March 2020.
  6. ^ "World Federation Of Societies of Anaesthesiologists – Coronavirus". Archived from the original on 12 March 2020. Retrieved 15 March 2020.
  7. ^ MSC Meraviglia cruise ship to dock in Cozumel, Mexico despite coronavirus fears (in English) El Universal (English), 26 February 2020
  8. ^ Mexico: No Coronavirus on MSC Meraviglia The Maritime Executive, 29 February 2020
  9. ^ Moore, Brooke. "First Case of COVID-19 in Cayman Islands Confirmed".
  10. ^ Charles, Jacqueline (14 March 2020). "Cayman records first COVID-19 death. Italian man was on same cruise as Puerto Rico couple". miamiherald. Retrieved 17 June 2020.
  11. ^ a b Moore, Brooke. "Government Statement on Passing of COVID-19 Patient". Retrieved 29 March 2020.
  12. ^ "First case of COVID-19 confirmed in the Cayman Islands". Retrieved 13 March 2020.
  13. ^ "Mandatory masks dropped under new rules - Cayman Islands Headline News". 25 August 2020.
  14. ^ "Cayman Islands records second COVID-19 death". loop. 16 November 2020. Retrieved 23 August 2021.
  15. ^ Cleary, Tom (17 December 2020). "Georgia Teen Jailed for 4 Months After She Broke Caymans Quarantine".
  16. ^ a b c Coto, Danica (18 December 2020). "US college student jailed for breaking quarantine in Cayman Islands". ABC7 Chicago.
  17. ^ a b Rebekah Riess. "Georgia college student sentenced to 4 months in prison for breaking Cayman Islands' Covid-19 protocol". CNN.
  18. ^ "4 months for 'selfish', 'arrogant' quarantine breachers". Cayman Compass. 15 December 2020.
  19. ^ COTO, DÁNICA (17 December 2020). "Cayman Islands jails US college student in coronavirus case". Yahoo News. AP. Retrieved 17 December 2020.
  20. ^ Chubb, Hannah (22 December 2020). "American Teen Jailed for Cayman Islands Quarantine Breach Has Sentence Reduced from 4 Months to 2". People. Retrieved 22 December 2020.
  21. ^ Gross, Jenny (19 January 2021). "Student Who Was Jailed for Breaking Quarantine in Caymans Apologizes". The New York Times. Archived from the original on 28 December 2021.
  22. ^ Staff (22 May 2020). "General election date set for 26 May 2021". Cayman Compass. Retrieved 8 February 2021.
  23. ^ "Wearing Masks & Face Coverings in the Cayman Islands".

External links