The Health in the Americas+ country profiles are based on the interagency indicators available as of the dates referenced. The sources are referenced in this table. In some cases, the values of the indicators may differ from the most recent data available in the country.
Environmental and social determinants of health
In 2000, the total population of the Cayman Islands was 36 659 inhabitants; by 2021 this figure had risen to 68 136 representing a 71,8% increase. Regarding the territory's demographic profile, in 2021 people over 65 years of age accounted for 7,8% of the total population, an increase of 2,3 percentage points compared to the year 2000. In 2021, there were 98.1 women per 100 men and 46,6 older people (65 years or older) per 100 children under 15 years of age, as can be seen in the territory's population pyramids, distributed by age group and sex (Figure 1). Considering the population between 15 and 64 years of age to be potentially active (i.e., potential participants in the labor force), this group represented 75,4% of the total population of the territory in 2021 (51 368 people). When these figures are added to the potentially passive population (11 437 under 15 years of age and 5 332 over 65 years of age), the result is a dependency ratio of 32,6 potentially passive people per 100 potentially active people. This ratio was 33,7 in 2000.
Life expectancy at birth is estimated at 75.1 in 2022 and was 72.9 in 2000.
Figure 1. Population pyramids of Cayman Islands, years 2000 and 2021
Between 2004 and 2015, the average number of years of schooling in the Cayman Islands increased by 15,6%, reaching an average of 13,4 years in the latest year for which information is available. The unemployment rate in 2020 was 5.2% of the total population. Disaggregated by sex, the rate was 6.2% for women and 4.2% for men. The literacy rate was 98.9% in 2007 (98.7% for men and 99% for women). The Cayman Islands enjoys a high standard of living with a gross domestic product (GDP) of US$85 340 and low poverty levels for 2020. Despite one of the region's highest GDPs, the Cayman Islands faces economic deprivation and inequalities in some parts of the multi-island territory.
Some countries and territories did not have their Human Development Index shared by the United Nations Development Programme. This is the case for the Cayman Islands. To overcome the lack of information, efforts have been made to generate the Human Development Index for non-United Nations members. A report from the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific calculated the Human Development Index for several countries and territories not previously contemplated by the traditional approach. Following the information shared through this report, the Cayman Islands presented a Human Development Index score of 0.984 in 2009.
In 2017, 81% of people in the Cayman Islands had an Internet connection, representing a considerable increase from 2005, when 38% of the population had an Internet connection.
Maternal and child health
Between 2003 and 2020, infant mortality in the Cayman Islands decreased from 4.8 to 3.6 deaths per 1000 live births, a decrease of 25% (Figure 2).
Regarding the immunization strategy, measles vaccination coverage was 85% in 2021, a decrease of 4.5 percentage points compared to 2000.
In relation to fertility, the Cayman Islands 2021 Census of Population and Housing survey results revealed that about 51.7% of all females aged 15 to 49 years are mothers. It is estimated that in 2022 women had an average of 1,2 children throughout their reproductive lives. In the specific case of adolescent fertility, the rate among teens (15–19 years) in 2022 was 10,9, decreasing by 79,7% from 2000.
Figure 2. Infant mortality per 1000 live births, 1995–2020
In 2020, there were three new cases of tuberculosis per 100 000 population in the Cayman Islands.
In 2020 the estimated human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection incidence rate (new diagnoses) was 3,2 per 100 000 population. It should be noted that during the 2009-2020 period this indicator decreased by 47,2%.
There were no cases of human rabies in the territory in 2020.
Noncommunicable diseases and risk factors
In the Cayman Islands, the prevalence of tobacco use among people aged 15 and older was 15% in 2012, according to the Government Chronic Disease Risk Factor Survey, known as the Health National survey.
In 2012, the reported prevalence of arterial hypertension (high blood pressure) among people aged 18 years or older was 26.5%. The prevalence of diabetes mellitus stood at 4.36% in 2021.
The overall mortality rate was 3.41 per 1000 population in 2019. When deaths are categorized into three main groups, it is observed that, in 2019, the mortality rate from diseases of the circulatory system was 107.2 per 100 000 population (124.4 per 100 000 in men and 90.4 per 100 000 in women). The rate from external causes was 32.8 per 100 000 population (14.4 per 100 000 in men and 39.5 per 100 000 in women), including road traffic accidents (12.8 per 100 000 population), homicides (4.2 per 100 000 population), and accidental drowning (5.7 per 100 000 population).
Regarding cancer mortality from tumors, in 2019, the mortality rate was 94.4 per 100 000 population (95.5 per 100 000 in men and 93.2 per 100 000 in women).
The health situation and the COVID-19 pandemic
In the Cayman Islands up to August 2022, there were a total of 21 602 cases of COVID-19, representing 317 440 per million population. Up to 2022, there were 19 deaths directly caused by COVID-19 in people diagnosed with the disease.
As of August 2021, at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccine had been given to 86.3% of the territory's population, summarizing 61,663 first doses. As of2 July 2022, 94,4% of the population had completed the vaccination schedule.
Measures to achieve universal health coverage
The Ministry of Health and Wellness aims to empower people in the Cayman Islands to achieve optimal well-being through strategic policies, innovative programs, and proactive services governed by the highest principles of justice, personal and public integrity, and excellence of standards. The Ministry of Health and Wellness consists of the core ministry office, and it has the responsibility to oversee the performance of five statutory authorities and/or government companies that fall within its remit. These are the Public Health Department, Health Services Authority, Health Regulatory Services, and The National Drug Council.
The community health services provide primary care through five satellite health centers – one for each district in Grand Cayman. Services provided include general practice, immunizations, maternal and child health care, health education, and support of patients with disabilities in their homes. There are public health programs, including:
- Health advice and vaccines for international travelers;
- School health, including primary care, health assessment, and vision and hearing tests;
- Nutrition and dietary counseling clinics;
- Child health, including growth and development monitoring;
- Communicable disease screening;
- Disease control programs, including surveillance, and immunization (adults and children);
- Special programs relating to genetics and sexual health.
COVID-19 pandemic response
The COVID-19 pandemic has been addressed by several initiatives from the Health Services Authority of the Cayman Islands. During the pandemic, several gazettes were issued describing the public health measures to control and suppress COVID-19. The regulations publicly shared through each gazette highlighted the measures to tackle the dissemination of the virus. Among the actions performed, it is possible to highlight the structuring of measures for:
- Testing of travelers and requisition of full vaccinal status;
- Establishment of quarantines for foreign visitors;
- Social distancing measures;
- Limitation of gathering limits for indoor and outdoor activities;
- Mass vaccination of the population;
- Mass testing of the population;
- A hotline was made available to clarify questions regarding flu symptoms from the population.
The plan to tackle the COVID-19 pandemic was organized in phases. The fifth phase, characterized by regulations, was implemented on 17 February 2022. This phase lifted the need for post-arrival testing for vaccinated travelers. Additionally, preflight testing was no longer required for vaccinated persons traveling between the territory's islands.