Deyalsingh unhappy over lag in updates for covid19 patients' families

Minister of Health Terrence Deyalsingh.  - Ayanna Kinsale
Minister of Health Terrence Deyalsingh. - Ayanna Kinsale

HEALTH Minister Terrence Deyalsingh said he was unhappy with health officials' communication with relatives of covid19 patients.

He was responding on Wednesday during the Health Ministry covid19 media conference to a question about complaints by relatives that they had been waiting for days for updates on the status of patients at Couva Hospital.

"It is is concerning me," Deyalsingh said. "The level of communication needs to be improved. I admit that freely."

He said he had a meeting scheduled with the chairman and CEO of the North Central Regional Health Authority (under whose purview Couva falls) to solve the issue.

He hoped that after the meeting there would be a plan to address the issue.

There are currently 76 covid19 patients at Couva Hospital and 30 at Caura Hospital.

On covid19 generally Deyalsingh said there will be a continuous programme of giving information and guidance, legislation and, unfortunately, now law enforcement.

"Because...there are still some pockets of people who don't get the message and who will only respond to police enforcement."

He recalled that on Monday afternoon, after he left the media conference, he went to buy lunch and one patron was eating lunch on the premises with his or her mask down in view of the public and the owner. He said this was clearly against the public health regulation for in-house dining.

"How do you legislate, again, for that? What else can we do for those persons who are hell-bent on crashing the system?"

He said he was "bitterly disappointed" in the unnamed restaurantt.

Epidemiologist Dr Avery Hinds said many of the covid19-positive patients who have died were elderly and have co-morbidities such as diabetes, hypertension and renal failure. He added, however, there were many people in younger age groups who did not know their co-morbidities, and stressed it was important for them to check their own health.

"Not only elderly people are at risk," he warned. "We have seen deaths in younger age groups. Do not take for granted (because you are young) that you are not at risk of an adverse outcome."

Deyalsingh also said there was growing evidence outside TT of people in their 20s, 30s and 40s with covid19 having cardiovascular events and serious strokes due to the development of blood clots.

"They are not as immune as they think."

The country has recorded 40 covid19-related deaths so far.


"Deyalsingh unhappy over lag in updates for covid19 patients’ families"

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