Take steps to mitigate risk of China virus spread to Jamaica, PNP urges gov't

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Take steps to mitigate risk of China virus spread to Jamaica, PNP urges gov't

Wednesday, January 22, 2020

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KINGSTON, Jamaica—The People's National Party (PNP) Shadow Minister of Health, Dr Morais Guy, says the party has taken note of and observing with serious concern the emergence of a new respiratory virus in China and its rapid spread to many other countries of the world.

In a statement today, Guy said that in light of the confirmation that the virus can be transmitted from human to human and the fact that there is much travel between Jamaica and China, the government must immediately take steps to mitigate the risk of spread to Jamaica.

“We are aware that at least one case has been confirmed in the USA and with the proximity as well as the significant air travel between the USA and Jamaica, it might only be a matter of when it reaches our shores,” he said.

Guy said the PNP has taken note that the Ministry of Health and Wellness has announced that there is a 'robust surveillance system' but expressed concern that the nation has not been enlightened with the potential of this virus and whether there are plans to put our health sector personnel on a system-wide alert and what would that alert contains.

The Opposition spokesperson said he is urging the Minister of Health, Dr Christopher Tufton to indicate to the country what is being done and what measures are in place to prevent its spread to Jamaica, or to reduce the spread if it gets here.

“The dengue epidemic and the flu season have put serious pressures on the public health system. We shudder to think what another viral infection can do to the stretched health sector,” the Shadow Minister said.

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