Tista' taqra bil- Malti.
The Malta Association of Public Health Medicine declared that Malta has experienced the worst week since the beginning of the pandemic in terms of the number of new cases of COVID-19 detected, arguing that these numbers are a direct consequence of irresponsible political behaviour, disregard of scientific evidence.
The MAPHM said that the country is in a worse position than Malta was last April. This has also demoralised many healthcare workers, including public health professionals who are facing a burnout.
Meanwhile, the association said that the current situation is also the result of conflicting messages pushed by prominent personalities which led to inadequate physical distancing, infrequent and incorrect use of masks and disregard of public health recommendations.
300 persons limit for mass event is too high-risk
The MAPHM zeroed in on the issue of mass events as the biggest flaw in the process of the release of measures which were applied to contain the spread of the virus in the first phase. It stressed that a limit of 300 people is simply too high-risk.
Neither ‘Project Fear’ nor ‘Project Hindsight’
Hitting at the various declarations done by MHRA President Tony Zahra, the MAPHM said that the scientific evidence and warnings were neither ‘Project Fear’ nor ‘Project Hindsight’. “Health professionals’ advice has been consistent from the start. Lifting and reintroducing restrictive measures in response to observations remains the only ‘safe’ way to manage this epidemic. Masks should be worn in all public places, frequent hand washing observed, physical distance maintained wherever possible, and crowds of people limited to the smallest numbers possible”, the association said.
Political leaders should lead by example
It also argued that political leaders should lead by example, encouraging the population to adopt these behaviours, and allocating sufficient resources to enforce these regulations. It also argued that apart from the cancellation of large events, nightclubs, bars, discos and party venues should be closed until the outbreak is brought back under control.
The MAPHM also said that English Language schools should be closed as unfortunately these have been identified as sources of sustained transmission in the community since students routinely visit entertainment venues without maintaining physical distancing.
Vulnerable people should avoid crowded areas
The Association also said that vulnerable individuals should be advised to avoid crowded areas and minimise contact with people outside of their immediate circle of friends and family to reduce risk, while working from home needs to be encouraged and facilitated by government and private companies alike stressing that as in many other areas, the government should lead by example.
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