Grenada’s Opposition Leader Tobias Clement has made a damning condemnation of the Keith Mitchell-led government over the lack of quarantine facilities for doctors and nurses engaged in the battle against the deadly novel coronavirus on the island.
“I don’t make statements just like that,” Clement told THE NEW TODAY in an exclusive interview Wednesday.
He charged that the ruling New National Party (NNP) government is not providing the frontline workers with quarantine facility as they battle the virus that has seen 130 persons tested positive for Covid-19 within the past eleven months.
“Doctors and nurses are reluctant to see after Covid-19 patients or people who are suspected of having Covid because the government do not provide them with a quarantine facility,” he said.
“If they get it they have to pay for it for themselves. There is inadequate facilities to quarantine for doctors and nurses after they deal with Covid-19 patients,” he added.
According to Clement, the situation is dire and the frontline workers in Grenada are forced to either “find one of your own or go back to your family”.
The Opposition Leader cited a case in which the attending physician and nurse had to go and find a bed in the Private Block in the General Hospital after looking after a Covid-19 patient.
“I am not saying that people say – this is first-hand information. What I tell you there is not second hand information – it is first-hand,” he remarked.
“…If you have doctors and nurses that are fulfilling their responsibility and you are not providing quarantine facility for them and they have to quarantine for themselves, they would not give you the service that is required”.
According to Clement this is a question that he has put on the Order Paper for the next sitting of Parliament on Tuesday that is directed at the Minister of Health to inform the nation what quarantine facilities have been put at the disposal of the island’s frontline workers who have dealt with Covid-19 or suspected Covid-19 patients.
“Can you imagine that a nurse has to go on the Private Block and sleep because they can’t go back at home and have no other place to go in terms of quarantine facility?
“I think that the Nurses too are up in arms because some of them are operating without an appointment and they are seeing other people getting appointment elsewhere”.
This is an obvious reference to the battle being waged by the Public Workers Union (PWU) to get the Mitchell government to offer nurses full employment within the Public Service and not place them on short-term contract.