The Health Protection Agency (HPA) on Sunday placed Hithadhoo in Addu City under monitoring status after an expatriate on the island tested positive for COVID-19.
According to a letter sent by Director General of Public Health Maimoona Aboobakr to Addu City Mayor Abdulla Sodiq, all movement into and out from Hithadhoo is restricted until further notice.
The monitoring notice also requested Addu City Council to cooperate with all public safety efforts initiated by authorities and designate an intermediary between the council and HPA.
HPA revealed that the individual that tested positive for COVID-19 was employed at a construction site at Addu High School. Additionally, a police officer that was observing home quarantine after travelling to Hithadhoo from the capital city of Male' tested positive for the virus on Saturday.
Addu Equatorial Hospital is currently leading efforts to conduct contact tracing concerning both of the aforementioned cases.
Speaking to local media outlet Mihaaru, the Addu City Mayor also revealed that the seven schools operating in Hithadhoo were also closed for a two-day period as a safety measure.
Located in the southernmost atoll in the country, Hithadhoo hosts several key institutions, including a COVID-19 management centre, the Addu Equatorial Hospital and the offices of several independent institutions.
The first individual to test positive for COVID-19 in Addu was a 65-year-old woman under transit quarantine at the Equator Village Quarantine Facility in Gan.
Maldives now records total 4,898 confirmed and 2,088 active COVID-19 cases, along with 2,791 recoveries and 19 deaths.
Currently, the island nation records the highest number of daily COVID-19 cases confirmed per capita in the entire globe.
The number of COVID-19 cases skyrocketed after the state initiated efforts to steer the country towards a 'new normal' with the phased easing of lockdown restrictions across the Greater Male' Region.
The recent spike has reduced the total amount of recovered patients from the peak 86 to 56 percent.
As one of the most densely populated cities in the world, Maldives' capital Malé continue to record a significant number of COVID-19 cases, similar to the first weeks following the first confirmed local transmission on April 15.
In addition to the Greater Male' region, active virus cases are also present in the local islands of Kelaa, Ihavandhoo and Filladhoo in Haa Alif Atoll, Naivaadhoo in Haa Dhaalu Atoll, Hulhudhuffaaru and Inguraidhoo in Raa Atoll, Kudarikilu and Kamadhoo in Baa Atoll, Hinnavaru of Lhaviyani Atoll, Maafushi of Kaafu Atoll, Fulidhoo of Vaavu Atoll, Fuvahmulah City and Addu City.
On March 12, WHO classified the spread of COVID-19 as a global pandemic. To date, the new strain of novel coronavirus has infected over 19.8 million people and claimed over 731,000 lives around the world. However, out of those infected, more than 12.7 million people have recovered.