PNP urges mask-wearing amidst rising flu cases
KINGSTON, Jamaica — People’s National Party (PNP)’s junior shadow minister for health and wellness, Jesse James Clarke, is reminding Jamaicans that mask-wearing is still an option, especially as the island grapples with an increase in respiratory illnesses.
In a recent interview with Observer Online, Clarke emphasised that wearing a mask is one of the easiest ways individuals can protect themselves from flu viruses.
“As you know, this time of the year, we normally see an increase in flu-related illnesses and respiratory illnesses as a whole. So, I’m imploring all Jamaicans to wear a mask, especially in crowded or poorly ventilated areas,” he said. “It is one of the easiest things you can do to physically protect yourself from contracting the flu virus circulating at this time of the year.”
Clarke expressed particular concern for vulnerable groups and urged Jamaicans to take personal responsibility for protecting those groups.
“I am also asking persons who are part of the vulnerable group, persons who have chronic respiratory illnesses like the asthmatics and so on, to ensure they do everything they can to protect themselves from the virus at this time of the year,” he shared. “COVID is still out there as well. If you’re ill, stay home. We don’t want to end up with a case where we have overcrowding in our hospitals because they are already struggling under the regular day-to-day pressure that they are facing.”
Meanwhile, the junior shadow minister expressed hope that the government has learned lessons from dealing with COVID and is prepared to provide oxygen at an increased rate this flu season.