Prime Minister Andrew Holness has announced that the whole of Jamaica is now considered a “disaster area” in light of the growing threat of the novel coronavirus, COVID-19.

The Prime Minister made the announcement a short time ago at an ongoing press conference at Jamaica House.

Prime Minister Holness has also announced that the 7 to 8 Miles community in Bull Bay will be quarantined for 14, in an effort to contain the COVID-19 virus and reduce the risk of community spread.

With this declaration, police and military personnel will be deployed to enforce the quarantine efforts.

Eight persons from that community are symptomatic while 22 others remain under investigation, though they are, at this time, asymptomatic, Health Minister Dr. Christopher Tufton said at the Press conference.

Officials say a survey of the needs of residents, including food and medication, is to be done over the next few days and a team will be assigned to ensure those needs are met.