Last week was a very strange week in Ibiza. Months of low Covid numbers were superseded by a big spike that has got many scratching their heads. Now today we have a further 88 new cases, as many as the whole of last week put together.
The numbers in the Balearics are now so high that Germany, Holland & Belgium have added the Islands to the blacklist where those returning have to take a test or serve a 14 day quarantine/isolation period.
This time though it’s a very different sensation from before. Back in April and May the majority of Covid cases were admitted to Can Misses Hospital and their intensive care unit was busy (but thankfully not too busy). This time round nearly all new cases are being reported as asymptomatic or with very mild symptoms. Visible queues can be seen at local testing stations so it’s clear that more people are being tested. It may also mean that the virus is weakening.
So as the the growing numbers continue to published daily it’s clear that the testing landscape and parameters have completely changed yet without any further background information the numbers are rendered almost meaningless.
Out of the 80 or so new active cases reported last week only 2 were deemed serious enough to be admitted to hospital. The rest were asymptomatic or had mild symptoms and are ‘isolating at home’. 80 new cases may appear to be a high number but to give it some context, 300 people tested positive last week from 1 factory in Northampton in the UK (the same country who deemed the Balearics unsafe to travel to).
As Ibiza residents and business owners we need a general overview of who and what these new cases are. Data protection is in place so we don’t need names (this isn’t a witch-hunt) but are they locals? Are they international tourists? Are they large families or friends who live and work together? Are they national tourists? And most importantly how did they get the virus? There MUST be a pattern forming and only by fully understanding the situation can we evaluate accordingly and potentially avoid risky situations. Yet all we get are numbers and more numbers and very little else.
Meanwhile back in the real world Ibiza carries on regardless, beaches are packed and restaurants have waiting lists but, because of these numbers on a spreadsheet, bars are forced to close and other countries have to take action. Something is not adding up here and until we have full disclosure the mistrust of the authorities will continue and the conspiracy theorists will carry on unabated.
For an island that relies on visiting tourism it’s a baffling situation that we are only being told a small fraction of the story and left to fill in the blanks with speculation and hearsay. In fact it’s gross negligence as these numbers are causing widespread fear and preying on the minds of many whilst businesses are forced to put up a closed sign because of an invisible enemy that most of us have never seen first hand or been affected by.
The numbers aren’t telling us the whole story and after all we’ve been through it’s the very least we deserve and it’s unforgivable that many islanders are now living in fear without knowing the full facts.