July 23, 2020
In The Bahamas, the government has made tough decisions because they serve the common good, even if they do not follow the easy path, Minister of Health the Hon. Renward Wells explained.
“We remain very guarded as we continue improvements of our health care system,” the Minister added during his Contribution to the Debate to Extend Emergency Orders in the House of Assembly, Thursday, July 23, 2020.
“While we have ensured immediate and safe accommodations for COVID-19 care in partnership with the private sector (that is, Doctors Hospital), as well as repurposing the community clinic at South Beach, our health system capacity remains limited.”
The Health Minister stated that the government has accelerated its efforts to shore up the country’s healthcare system to deal with this and any other crisis we may face, renovating the medical infrastructure in New Providence and Grand Bahama, particularly.
He noted that while detractors seek to distract, he is happy to report that the Emergency Operations Centre of the Ministry of Health has been on task every day since the beginning of this crisis.
“They meet daily to anticipate and act to mitigate against another surge. This resurgence was predicted by many experts and, sadly, we see the results of those predictions with the infection raging in Florida and other parts of the United States.”
He said the government’s response to this pandemic has been proactive and exemplary. Real-time information and the best public health advice, complemented by undaunting leadership, have been keys to such success.
“We have had the general cooperation of our constituents thus far and we look forward to that continuing. We thank them because, without that cooperation, we would have lost many more lives.
“So, I renew the call to patriotism, to love of country, and to the love of neighbour. There is another side of this pandemic and I want as many of us possible to make it there, to the other side.”
He added, “Our health team needs us to once again be patient and cooperative to save the lives of our loved ones.”
Minister Wells stated that the country’s doctors, nurses, and other healthcare workers on the frontline, national security branches, and other essential workers – all of them have worked hard thus far to protect the nation’s borders, contain infections, and save lives.
“We are so very proud of and grateful for our frontline workers. I applaud them and, in military terms, I thank them for standing on the wall.
“Going to work during this COVID-19 pandemic has placed them under unprecedented pressure, putting their physical, mental and social wellbeing at risk.”
Minister Wells said, “We acknowledge that the exposure to excessive stress can have many harmful consequences on the emotional and mental wellbeing of frontline workers.”
By Llonella Gilbert