Tracy Davidson-Celestine

The Tobago House of Assembly (THA) has been allocated $53 million to fight the impact of COVID-19. This is according to Secretary of Health, Wellness and Family Development Tracy Davidson-Celestine during a news conference yesterday.

Davidson-Celestine said representation was made to Government for the increased allocation and the request was granted. She said, the amount reflects $50 million in an additional allocation and $3 million from the Division of Health’s budget.

“We have put aside $53 million to fight COVID and to ensure that we are able to treat with any outstanding bills at the TRHA and to ensure we are able to procure the services, the equipment, whatever is needed for us to fight this fight that we are all engaged in as individuals, communities and residents of Tobago. Representation was of course made to Central Government and they have acceded to our request,” she said.

Commenting on the relationship and collaborations between the Ministry of Health and the Division of Health in the THA in treating with the COVID-19 situation, Davidson-Celestine said Tobago has been getting adequate support from the Central Government.

“I want to give you the members of the public the assurance, whenever we request any additional support, whether it may be from the Ministry of Health, or even Central Government, we are able to obtain where necessary that support and so we have received financial support, we have been receiving the kind of equipment and PPEs for the doctors and for the nurses to undertake their jobs and we continue to ensure that we have that collaboration in order to treat with your particular situation,” Davidson-Celestine said.

Meanwhile, as Tobago recorded its third case of the coronavirus, with the second case being a healthcare worker, and the third being a patient who was warded at the Adult Medical Ward at the Scarborough General Hospital, contact tracing is said to be ongoing.

Guardian Media understands, the male patient who is in his 60s, was warded for some time and was attended to by several medical staff before he was confirmed as positive for COVID-19.

County Medical Officer of Health Dr Tiffany Hoyte said both primary and secondary contacts to both patients, have been quarantined.

“The contact tracing is ongoing currently for both patients two and three. Currently, all primary and secondary contacts are being quarantined, so for patient number two, we have 24 primary contacts who have been quarantined so far and 31 secondary contacts. For patient number three we have 26 primary contacts, who would have been quarantined thus far and five secondary contacts. Now that number is going to increase as we continue the contact tracing and just to state, it includes both family members and healthcare workers, but it’s an ongoing process,” Dr Hoyte said.

She said, other healthcare staff continue to carry out their duties at the Scarborough General Hospital and have been ordered to wear the appropriate personal protective equipment, along with self-monitoring.