COVID-19 pandemic in the Northern Mariana Islands

The COVID-19 pandemic was confirmed to have reached the United States Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands in March 2020.

COVID-19 pandemic in the Northern Mariana Islands
Virus strainSARS-CoV-2
LocationNorthern Mariana Islands
Index caseSaipan
Arrival dateMarch 28, 2020
(2 months and 2 days)
Confirmed cases21[1]
Government website


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, Hubei, 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]


Municipality [a] Cases [b][c] Deaths [c] Recov. [c] Pop. Cases / 100k Ref.
1 / 4 21 2 12 53,883 26
Northern Islands Municipality 0 0 0 0 [d]
Rota 0 0 0 2,527 0
Saipan 21 2 12 48,220 29
Tinian 0 0 0 3,136 0 [e]
Updated May 16, 2020
Data is publicly reported by Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands Commonwealth Healthcare Corporation[7][8][9]
  1. ^ Municipality where individuals with a positive case reside. Location of original infection may vary.
  2. ^ Reported cases includes presumptive and confirmed case. Actual case numbers are probably higher.
  3. ^ a b c "–" denotes that no data is currently available for that municipality, not that the value is zero.
  4. ^ Includes the islands of Farallon de Pajaros (Urracas), Maug Islands, Asuncion, Agrihan (Agrigan), Pagan, Alamagan, Guguan, Zealandia Bank, Sarigan, Anatahan, and Farallon de Medinilla.
  5. ^ Includes the island of Aguijan (Agiguan).

On 28 March, the islands confirmed their first two COVID-19 cases.[10]

The first death from coronavirus in the CNMI occurred on March 30 at Kanoa Resort.[11] A second death was reported on April 7 at the Commonwealth Health Care Corporation (CHCC).[12]

On 13 April, the CNMI received 20,000 test kits from South Korea; this shipment is expected to be the first of three, totaling 60,000, to arrive.[13]

Prevention measuresEdit

Flights from China and Hong Kong were cancelled in early February,[14] leading to a drawdown in tourists to the island of Saipan and subsequently an economic crisis which triggered an austerity.[15] By March 12, a task force was in place to manage the austerity measures put into place.[16]

As a precautionary measure on March 17, Governor Torres shut schools and government offices.[17] The continuation of daily United Airlines' nonstop flights from Guam 120 miles away led to all arriving individuals suspected of coronavirus symptoms to be placed in quarantine at the Kanoa Resort.[18] Circa 16 March, governor Ralph Torres temporarily closed all schools and government offices.[17] A government task force has also been set up to monitor the situation.[16]


  1. ^ a b c "Information about COVID-19". Commonwealth Healthcare Corporation. Retrieved 16 May 2020.
  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. ^ "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. ^ "CNMI Commonwealth Healthcare Corporation Official Website". CNMI Commonwealth Healthcare Corporation. Retrieved 5 May 2020.
  8. ^ "Information About COVID-19". CNMI Commonwealth Healthcare Corporation. Retrieved 5 May 2020.
  9. ^ "Confirmed Cases of COVID-19 in the CNMI" (PDF). CNMI Commonwealth Healthcare Corporation. 18 April 2020. Retrieved 5 May 2020.
  10. ^ "Saipan confirms two COVID-19 positive cases". Pacific Daily News. 28 March 2020. Retrieved 29 March 2020.
  11. ^ Sablan, Jerick (30 March 2020). "Saipan officials confirm one man dead of suspected COVID-19". Pacific Daily News. Retrieved 2 April 2020.
  12. ^ Governor, Office of the. "Marianas Variety – Second Covid-19 patient passes away". Retrieved 8 April 2020.
  13. ^ Sablan, Jerick (14 April 2020). "CNMI gets thousands of COVID-19 tests". Pacific Daily News. Retrieved 14 April 2020.
  14. ^ De La Torre, Ferdie (2 February 2020). "3 airlines cancel flights". Saipan News, Headlines, Events, Ads | Saipan Tribune. Retrieved 2 April 2020.
  15. ^ De La Torre, Ferdie (7 February 2020). "Austerity measures announced today". Retrieved 2 April 2020.
  16. ^ a b Covid-19 Task Force to address community concerns Marianas Variety
  17. ^ a b "Pacific countries, already hard hit by epidemics, take extreme coronavirus measures". RNZ. 16 March 2020. Retrieved 17 March 2020.
  18. ^ Staff, Daily Post. "United Airlines flights between Guam and Saipan canceled". The Guam Daily Post. Retrieved 2 April 2020.

External linksEdit