Facilities Manager: Health of quarantine staff is top priority
Alvin Hart, quarantine facilities manager for COVID-19 in Barbados.
Quarantine facilities manager for COVID-19 in Barbados, Alvin Hart, has assured that the lives of local health care workers remains of the utmost importance.
Hart, was part of the World Health Organisation (WHO) team based in Sierra Leone during the height of the Ebola outbreak.
Speaking during the Barbados Government Information Service (BGIS) live briefing on COVID-19, Hart expressed that the loss of life of any health care workers during a pandemic is always most heartbreaking. He indicated that the Ministry of Health and Wellness has taken the measures to properly educate health care workers and professionals on the disease and the correct personal protective equipment (PPE) to use.
“Even now in Barbados, we have health care workers who are very jittery, nervous and unsure. They are asking for everything, like ‘Do we need to dress like it is Ebola?’ but what we have to understand is that each disease is transmitted differently and as a health care worker, the PPE or personal protective equipment you wear will be different for every disease based on disease transmission,” he explained.
“Many health care workers died in west Africa because they didn’t know how to take off the PPE and when they were taking it off, they touched their skin and so on and they became infected with that,” Hart continued.
Hart will oversee the quarantine facilities at the Barbados Defense Force Paragon base, St Lucy District Hospital, Elayne Scantlebury Centre and Harrison's Point.
The quarantine facilities manager also disclosed discussions were ongoing to provide psychological support for staff who will be working in the facilities.
“It is not just the clients we are caring for that we have to look out for but we have to spend some time looking after the caregivers, let them know what they are going into and the possibilities and the outcomes.
“One life lost is one life too much so I think that our healthcare system will really take this serious although it is not as infectious as Ebola we still have to be very careful in what we do and it must be an all-country approach,” he emphasized.