5 Healthcare Workers Test Positive for COVID-19
Sands said the country cannot afford to lose healthcare workers; they are needed to fight the deadly disease
Minister of Health Duane Sands said of the 24 people tested positive for COVID19, five of them are healthcare workers.
At a COVID-19 press conference, Sands said this represents 21% of those affected and it is far too many, as healthcare workers remain on the front line of the battle against the deadly disease.
Sands added that 50 healthcare workers were removed from the system after exposure to the virus, and were since placed in isolation or quarantined.
“This is a grave concern that 21 percent of our cases are healthcare workers. This high percentage of exposure to our health workforce cannot continue, or we will find ourselves without enough workers in our army to wage a war against COVID-19,” he said.
Sands said their routine of caring for the sick, potentially exposes them to the virus. He added that losing healthcare workers in the midst of a surge has a catastrophic effect.
“If there are fewer trained people to administer care because they are sick, fewer people are treated and the quality of care diminishes. Consequently, more people die when health workers catch this virus and hospital systems become strained or collapse,” he said.
Sands emphasized the need to protect such workers and said the workers are outfitted with the necessary personal protection equipment needed to treat patients.
“We have ensured that there are adequate IPC and PPE supplies in sufficient quantity for all those caring for suspected or confirmed COVID-19 patients,” he said.
He pleaded, “I need you to do your part to protect our healthcare workers and not to overburden the system.”
On Friday afternoon, the Ministry of Health announced that a worker at the Elizabeth Estates Clinic was identified as a possible contact of a coronavirus case.
The clinic was closed for cleaning and reopened on Thursday.