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Guy wants better resources for first responders amid Coronavirus concerns

Published:Sunday | February 2, 2020 | 2:13 PM
Opposition Spokesperson on Health, Dr Morais Guy - File photo

The People's National Party (PNP) says the government must urgently address concerns among some health sector workers about the lack of resources in hospitals and the exposure of first responders to suspected cases of the Coronavirus.

According to opposition spokesperson on health, Dr Morais Guy, dissatisfaction among health care workers has escalated since a patient who recently travelled to China was isolated at the Annotto Bay Hospital in St Mary on Saturday.

The woman has since been transferred to health facility in Kingston.

READ: Isolated patient with flu-like symptoms transferred 

“We have been told that the recommended protective masks rated at N95 are not available and that there are no eyes shields as well as hazmat suits in the local hospitals to protect our front-line responders as well as the rest of the staff,” said Guy in a statement this afternoon.

He argued that Jamaica must be concerned about the veracity of the assurances given by the Minister of Health and Wellness that the Ministry and the Government have prepared the hospitals and facilities to deal with the potential outbreak.

“We cannot as a country expect our workers to be out on the front line for us, yet we do not provide them with the necessary equipment to protect themselves,” Guy charged.

 He said the state of affairs is further compounded by the fact that training has not been given to the local hospitals to be able to deal with this new emerging virus.

“We, therefore, call upon the Minister to equip these facilities instead of just paying lip service. We also call upon him to do this as a matter of urgency so it can stem the tide of discontent among the workers in an already burdened health care system,” Guy said.

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