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Ministry of Health Announces New Measures for COVID-19 #546500
11/26/20 10:56 AM
11/26/20 10:56 AM
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 84,240
oregon, spr
Marty Offline OP

Marty  Offline OP

Ministry of Health and Wellness Press Conference on Escalating COVID-19 Cases. Curfew to be implemented for 21 days.

Re: Ministry of Health Announces New Measures for COVID-19 [Re: Marty] #546503
11/26/20 11:03 AM
11/26/20 11:03 AM
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 84,240
oregon, spr
Marty Offline OP

Marty  Offline OP
Government of Belize takes Preventative Measures starting with a 21-day Curfew.


[Linked Image]

TAKEN FROM KREM NEWS: Dr. Fernando Cuellar speaks .. read people !!

"People will soon start dying in waiting areas, parking lots, on the streets," warns Dr. Fernando Cuellar

Following a meeting of the Belize Medical and Dental Association last night, Dr. Fernando Cuellar, for the 1st time, called in to the KREM WUB Morning Vibes to report on the discussion. He says he feels it his duty to do so and urgently informed the public that our health system, both public and private, is now being overwhelmed by the COVID-19 pandemic and people will start dying on the streets. He pointed to people already being treated at home and placed on oxygen.

Dr. Cuellar, one of our few internists, highlighted our lack of resources: not enough ventilators, blood gas machines, physical space (hospital beds), medication and human resources.

He referenced it as "a slow, painful death of the person," as he called on the Belizean people to do things differently and take the SARS-CoV-2 virus seriously.

He also called on his colleagues to speak truth to the politicians.

Among his recommendations are, readily available testing in all districts, "an army of contact tracers," and partners outside of the public and private health systems helping to fight the spread of COVID.

He concluded saying "Don't go around saying 'if yoh dead, yoh dead. It is an ugly death, my people.'"

A nurse from the south subsequently called in to corroborate what she called the "over saturation" of our hospitals. Health staff are being told "just do your best...and some are making it and some just don't."

Re: Ministry of Health Announces New Measures for COVID-19 [Re: Marty] #546509
11/26/20 02:48 PM
11/26/20 02:48 PM
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 84,240
oregon, spr
Marty Offline OP

Marty  Offline OP
Ministry of Health and Wellness Announces New Measures for COVID-19

One of the priority campaign areas of this new administration was to develop and share a new strategy for COVID-19 going forward. After a very immediate and intense review along with several consultations, the Minister of Health and Wellness Hon. Michel Chebat, SC on the advice of Cabinet has approved the following recommendations to increase the response for change through specific key areas: Epidemiological surveillance, hospital and lab capacity, medical and pharmaceutical supplies and risk communication and education for behavior change.

Specific recommendations:

1. Improve Surveillance and Testing Capacities
a. Immediate – implement and scale up the use of rapid test in all district hospitals for symptomatic and close contacts.
b. Hire additional staff including (ex. laboratory technicians, lab aides, contact tracers and data entry clerks).
c. Active Surveillance with Ministry of Health teams at private businesses.
d. Establish testing sites outside of the hospital in accessible areas in urban communities and create two mobile swabbing teams for rural communities.

2. Surge Capacity for Hospital Services

a. Hiring of additional human resources such as nurses, doctors, specialist heath staff, support staff for deployment to all regional and community hospitals
b. Acquisition of additional medical equipment and supplies.

3. National Public Health Measures for Containment

a. Implement curfew from 9:00 p.m. to 5:00 a.m. for 21 days effective Saturday, November 28, 2020.
b. Restriction of gatherings remains at 10 people at general public places, including the immediate household.
c. Every organization is expected to implement work from home orders and/or staff shift rotation for employees.
d. Provide food packages and stipend to families in quarantine in conjunction with the Ministry of Human Development, Families & Indigenous Peoples’ Affairs.
e. Provide hotel for persons who cannot quarantine at home.
f. Assess housing conditions to determine adequacy for isolation and/or quarantine.
g. Enforcement of Quarantine Measures in conjunction with the Ministry of Home Affairs and New Growth Industries.
h. Provide accommodation and other logistics for health care personnel.
i. New Health Education Campaign to reach both public and private sector in collaboration with the media and Non-Governmental Organization.
j. Restaurants without outdoor dining to have takeout and delivery service only.
k. Outdoors restaurants are allowed to operate with a maximum of 12 persons.
l. Churches can conduct service but it remains at 10 persons maximum
m. Bars remain closed.
n. Gymnasiums are to remain closed

The Ministry of Health and Wellness is eager and committed to work with all sectors to reduce the increasing COVID-19 cases and deaths. The Ministry will continue to monitor the situation in the immediate short term and adjust plans as necessary on the advice of its medical team.

Please continue to wear a face mask properly in public, maintain consistent physical distancing and wash and sanitize hands at every opportunity. Be safe and stay at home.

“Let’s join forces in fighting COVID-19.”

Re: Ministry of Health Announces New Measures for COVID-19 [Re: Marty] #546513
11/27/20 05:31 AM
11/27/20 05:31 AM
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 84,240
oregon, spr
Marty Offline OP

Marty  Offline OP
Ministry of Health and Wellness announces national curfew and plan to combat COVID-19

In an effort to heighten new public measures to combat COVID-19, as of this Saturday, November 28th a 21-day curfew will take place countrywide from 9PM to 5AM. This was announced by the Ministry of Health and Wellness (MOHW) Honourable Michel Chebat during a virtual press conference on Thursday, November 26th. Additionally, the ministry will be injecting $15 million to fund new approaches and test sites will be expanded in key areas on the mainland. Although there were no indications as to what resources will be assigned to the islands (Ambergris Caye and Caulker), MOHW will be assessing the situation on the Cayes and provide the necessary assistance.

21 day curfew michael chebatThe Ministry briefly touched on the situation on the islands and stated that they will be assessing the conditions and provide resources accordingly. One of the issues brought up was the living conditions on the island, particularly San Pedro Town, which was at one time the epicentre of the virus in the country. No further details were provided, MOHW personnel is expected to visit the island to further get a grip of the situation and what is needed to keep islanders safe. Minister Chebat emphasized that restaurants will not be closed, but those with indoor facilities will only be able to offer take-out services. Restaurants with outdoor facilities will only be able to have a maximum of 12 patrons at a time. Chebat said that government took into consideration the impact the curfew and these regulations can have on tourism, but what is important is the reduction of large groups in one place. In addition, private gatherings will be limited to 10 persons and no public gatherings will be tolerated.

Click here to read the rest of the article in the San Pedro Sun

Re: Ministry of Health Announces New Measures for COVID-19 [Re: Marty] #546515
11/27/20 05:53 AM
11/27/20 05:53 AM
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 84,240
oregon, spr
Marty Offline OP

Marty  Offline OP

Where Will Covid Relief Coffers Come From

Now all those new measures - specifically the components that come with a price tag - will be funded by a 15-million-dollar influx from the Government of Belize - which should fund COVID relief efforts for 6 months.

But, many are asking, where will the money come from? After all, 8 days ago, the Prime Minister and Minister of Finance said. quote, "the UDP Government maxed out the credit card. We do not earn enough to pay our bills." End quote.

So, if it can't pay its bills without borrowing, where is government going to find 15 million much needed dollars to fund a suitable COVID response?

Is it going to be re-allocated from some other area of spending - or is there going to be a supplementary budget?

Minister Chebat says the source of funding details are for his boss to figure out:

"Where is this money coming from? Will the ministry be receiving it in parts and how will that 15 million dollars be provided and spent?"

Hon. Michel Chebat - Minister of Health
"Cabinet has approved the 15 million dollars and so this will be coming through the Ministry of Finance."

"We have the finances and we have the tests available in this matter."

Hon. Michel Chebat
"We are taking this pandemic very seriously and it is a priority for this government to deal and so we will be finding the funds to be able to continue our testing program."

"Specifically, where is that money coming from? Is it borrowing? Is it taking from other portfolios, where exactly is it coming from?"

Hon. Michel Chebat
"I believe that is a question better directed to the Ministry of Finance because they are the ones who are going to be charged with finding the funds for us. Very clearly the figure of 15 million dollars was not pulled out of the sky, this figure was put together by the technical people at the Ministry of Health and Wellness. As you are aware, this pandemic changes from day to day and so that we need our planning to be flexible and we are planning on a 6 month basis as we speak as this initial 15 million dollars will go to cover that initial 6 month period."

Notably, due to what we are told is a technical glitch, the questions from this media house and many others were muted from the broadcast at the press conference - where, also, journalists were only allowed to ask two questions.

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