The Malta Independent 27 February 2021, Saturday

Medical associations express ‘dismay’ at high Covid-19 numbers, call for more restrictive measures

Thursday, 14 January 2021, 19:51 Last update: about 2 months ago

A number of Medical Specialist Associations have said that they are “disturbed and dismayed” by the resurgence in the number of Covid-19 cases and called for an increase in restrictive measures.

Malta has had significantly high numbers of Covid-19 cases, with the number of active cases reaching a peak of 2,601 – a record – on Wednesday, although that number decreased marginally to 2,594.

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Health Minister Chris Fearne had warned last week that more restrictive measures may be put into place if the high number of cases remains prolonged.

They noted that although most people are behaving responsibly, a small section of the public have acted carelessly and irresponsibly over the festive season.

“This was compounded by a lack of political will to restrain social mixing. Let us hope there will not be a repeat during the carnival recess”, they said

“The government needs to be proactive and increase restrictive measures.  Politicians must refrain from any discourse that is unscientific and that confuses the public”, they added.

They observed that the availability of the vaccine and its administration in sufficient numbers for it to be effective are two very different issues. Until something like 60-70% of the whole population have been vaccinated, the risk for Covid-19 to the community at large and particularly to the vulnerable remains a very real issue, they said.

This is why there is the need to remain vigilant and to stick to public health measures until such time that the vaccine programme runs its course.  

“In this regard, we urge the Health authorities to keep everybody updated with respect to the progress of the vaccination programme”, they said, before encouraging everyone to take the vaccine and to continue to observe strict Covid-19 measures. 

"We are nowhere near any semblance of normality and saying that we are is insulting to all front liners and to COVID victims and their families", they said.

They added that we shall now, once again, be experiencing a resurgence in hospital admissions and sadly, more deaths.

"We continue to get the impression that politicians are resisting to take on board the advice of experts in the field. This pandemic is far from over."

The statement was signed by Malta College of Pathologists, Malta College of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Malta Association of Ophthalmologists, Geriatric Medicine Society, Association of Anaesthetists, Malta, Malta Association of Dermatology and Venereology, Maltese Paediatric Association, Maltese Association of Radiologists and Nucelar Medicine Physicians, Malta Association of Otolaryngology and Head and Neck Surgery, Association of Surgeons of Malta, and the Malta Association of Public Health Medicine.

 

 

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