JIS News

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  • The Parliamentary Opposition has signalled its full cooperation for the actions being taken by the Government to contain and reduce the spread of the Chikungunya virus, and plans being put in place to prevent the introduction of the Ebola virus in Jamaica, as well as measures to deal with any possible Ebola case in the country.
  • The Opposition has welcomed an initiative by Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller to meet with all Members of Parliament and Mayors at Jamaica House on Tuesday, October 14, to provide them with an update on government action related to the health emergencies facing the country.
  • Speaking at the Jamaica House meeting on behalf of the Opposition, Spokesman on Health, Dr. Kenneth Baugh said the comprehensive presentation by the Prime Minister on the collaborative actions being taken by the Government gave confidence that management is being brought to the situations.

The Parliamentary Opposition has signalled its full cooperation for the actions being taken by the Government to contain and reduce the spread of the Chikungunya virus, and plans being put in place to prevent the introduction of the Ebola virus in Jamaica, as well as measures to deal with any possible Ebola case in the country.

The  Opposition  has  welcomed  an  initiative  by  Prime  Minister  Portia  Simpson  Miller  to  meet with  all  Members  of  Parliament  and  Mayors  at  Jamaica  House  on  Tuesday,  October  14,  to provide them with an update on government action related to the health emergencies facing the country. Speaking at the Jamaica House meeting on behalf of the Opposition, Spokesman  on Health, Dr. Kenneth Baugh said the comprehensive presentation by the Prime Minister on the collaborative actions being taken by the Government gave confidence that management is being brought to the situations.

He expressed the hope that the implementation of the plans would reflect the comprehensive nature of the Prime Minister’s presentation.

Meanwhile, Prime Minster Simpson Miller stressed the importance of unity and a non-partisan and non-political approach to the health emergencies. “This is our country. We all have a stake and  a  vested  interest  in  protecting  it  and  keeping  our  people  safe  and  healthy,”  the  Prime Minister noted.

In giving details of plans for a  major clean-up exercise  to  destroy mosquito breeding sites and thereby control the spread of ChikV, the Prime Minister said she sympathised with persons who have  been  affected  by  the  painful  illness.  The  campaign  will  involve  targeted  action  in  areas identified by the Ministry of Health in its mapping exercise as being among the worst affected and priority areas.

The exercise is being funded by State resources in the amount of $500 million, plus $131  million which has been provided from the Consolidated Fund to the National Solid Waste Management Authority  to  deal  with  the  backlog  of  garbage  collection.  Management  of  the  clean-up  and vector control programme is being done by a team involving the Ministry of Health, the Office of  Disaster  preparedness  and  Emergency  Management,  the  JEEP  Secretariat,  the  Ministry  of Finance with logistics coordination by the Jamaica Defence Force.

Meanwhile, the Prime Minister outlined a comprehensive Ebola national response and action plan led by the Ministry of Health and the  Jamaica Defence Force, with a major emphasis on training,  sensitisation,  simulations and public communication. She pointed out that everybody has a role and a responsibility in this effort and called on the media and political operatives to be responsible in this period.

“I  know  that  there  are  real  concerns  among  the  population.  Let  us  discuss  those  concerns. There is nothing to be gained from inciting panic and fear,” the Prime Minister said.  “Let us, as leaders, be guided by the agreed scientific facts  and not speculate or express casual opinions which  can  cause  panic  and  demoralise our frontline  workers,”  Prime  Minister  Simpson  Miller added.