Chief Medical Officer Dr. Sharra Greenaway-Duberry said Wednesday that the health facilities are now in emergency mode due to the current COVID-19 outbreak and the shortage of nursing staff.
Speaking to Penny Maloney on Wednesday’s edition of Talking Health on ZJB Radio Montserrat, the CMO said health services have been curtailed across all the primary and secondary care centres.
She explained that with the loss of Cuban contingent in March, they are down six nurses. Earlier this week, a call went out for registered nurses here and in the Diaspora to apply for vacant positions in Montserrat.
The hospital is only handling emergency surgeries and there have been cutbacks on community clinics to ease the burden with a limited nursing pool.
Minister of Health Charles Kirnon said Tuesday that they are combing the globe to find new nurses. They are looking at Ghana and the Philippines as possible sources for nurses. He expressed that the nursing challenge is not unique to Montserrat. A request has been made to Public Health UK to send a team of nurses who can assist in the short term.
The CMO is encouraging residents to adhere to protocols and do everything possible to protect themselves from COVID-19. This, she said, would be a way for the public to support the healthcare community at this time.