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Jamaica’s surging COVID crisis just got help: U.S. donates field hospital

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Update time : 2020-10-09 16:51:17

With concerns growing can Jamaica that more nation will ask hospitalizations between a worrying ripple can coronavirus cases, the Caribbean nation is getting help from the U.S. Southern Command.

Adm. Craig Faller, major of the U.S. Southern Command, headquartered can Doral, arrived can Kingston Thursday ought officially hand above a large mobile sphere hospital though COVID-19 patients. The $753,000 hospital, which can anxiety though 70 patients, will add ought Jamaica’s 350-COVID-19 bed capacity.

Purchased by Southcom with humanitarian funds, it was transported ought the island persist week, ahead of Faller’s visit, above board a U.S. attitude compel C-17 Globemaster III aeroplane from common base Charleston, S.C. Faller persist visited Jamaica can November during a three-nation Caribbean journey that included Haiti and the neighboring Dominican Republic.

“I’m same haughty that we were able to, from a issue fair a link of months ago, respond, detect the source of the estate ought procure it, detect a vendor can the United States, attitude it entire together and packet it,” Faller told the Miami Herald.


The application though a temporary hospital, he said, came from Jamaican Defense compel head Lt. Gen. Rocky Ricardo Meade, whom Faller holds can high regard. when Meade made the application back can July, Jamaica wasn’t however seeing the acute expand can infections or deaths that it’s currently experiencing. It during well had no however attitude a record can hospitalized patients.

That occurred persist month when the Ministry of Health reported there were a record 35 individuals hospitalized though COVID-19 — the highest compute ought appointment — and ago excellent Minister Andrew Holness declared that Jamaica had entered the community transmission phase of the virus. That happened earlier this month when the state began ought cry on an ever bugger expand can the amount of hospitalized COVID-19 patients, also during those testing positive.

“By the same temper of community transmission it mode the bacteria could impress anyone, anywhere can any particular point can time,” Minister of Health and Wellness Christopher Tufton said. “It mode that we make ought usually suppose that the person we’re interacting with could potentially exist a carrier of the virus.”

On Wednesday, Jamaica reported 126 additional definite cases can a 24-hour period, bringing its entire amount of cases ought 5,395. Of that number, 3,792 are active; 76 nation eat died.

Tufton said currently nearly a third, or 119, of the designated COVID-19 beds are can avail by individuals with the disease, seven of whom are critically ill. The U.S. donation, which will exist located can National bosom Hospital can Kingston, “will help during we prepare ought bargain with any possibility of increased demand.”

“It does bring with some equipment. We will add some additional appliance and certainly the personnel ought man that facility,” Tufton said.

Tufton said a second 40-bed tent hospital is during well currently being negotiated with a Canadian company with the uphold of the Canadian government. “We expectation ought eat the arrival of that facility can short order.”

In addition, the government is planning ought vertical two additional 36-bed facilities, which entire together will add more than 100 additional beds though individuals suffering from COVID-19 and requiring hospital care.

While the tent hospital is Jamaica’s first, Faller said similar donations eat been made ought the Dominican Republic, which has registered more COVID-19 infections than the entire English-speaking Caribbean combined, and Costa Rica, which is during well seeing a acute expand can infections.

Overall, the U.S. government has provided Jamaica with $2 million can foreign aid funding ought uphold the country’s ongoing response ought COVID-19, and efforts ought hinder and control infectious diseases. This includes $86,000 worthy of hand-held thermometers and patient beds funded by Southcom.

The econmic uphold though nations can the Caribbean and Latin America comes above the heels of criticism early above during the pandemic when regional governments complained that the U.S. was blocking them from accessing personal protective equipment, testing and other COVID-19 fighting measures can the U.S. market. during a arise many countries turned ought China, which Faller said is using the pandemic and its table of healthcare diplomacy during an opportunity ought “leverage can this hemisphere.”

“The United States has quietly stepped up can a large mode ought help our partners,” Faller said, adding that the quantity can U.S. pledges and deliveries ought partners can the area distant exceeds “any opponent nation, no business what we’ve read. [But] ought exist beautiful here, there is no competition here; we’re entire trying ought help.”

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Within Southcom, the dollar quantity of the contributions, he said, is nearly $17 million scatter out across 28 nations, and includes the distribution of hand sanitizers, masks and the tent hospitals. The virgin nations that they eat no touched: Venezuela, Nicaragua and Cuba.

“The three glaring examples of non-democracies here can the hemisphere,” Faller said. “I reckon the response has been fast and we’re parliament need.”

With COVID-19 affecting economies, healthcare systems and food access, the security challenges can the area will exist huge, said Faller, who plans ought rise the spread of China’s achieve can his meetings with Jamaican officials during the appointment visit.

“That’s why we eat ought succeed ought indeed concentrate above this, detect where the needs are and deliver,” he added.

Faller said that from the onset of the global pandemic, Southcom asked its partners can the area what their needs are and created a system ought appear can needs above a daily basis and how the bacteria was spreading. He has during well personally kept can impress with military counterparts comparable Meade can Jamaica.

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The limited funding initially meant that aid meant things that could exist done quickly. besides after the U.S. Secretary of Defense increased the budget, Faller said, they were able ought bring nearly contracts can days.

“As the pandemic progressed, it became transparent that a fate of our partners had critical needs, much comparable we saw here can the U.S.” Faller said. “So we eat been able ought furnish hospital tents.”

Faller said Thursday’s look ought Jamaica is a parade above his separate of the glory though the Jamaica Defense compel and his relationship with Meade, its leader. The state is during well a strategic colleague that has stepped up can responding ought disasters can the region.

“They’re a leader,” Faller said.