The Medical Association of Malta (MAM) said it is concerned that the Prime Minister’s proposals go against the advice of Public Health experts and are without the necessary scientific basis.
In a statement issued on Monday, MAM reminded Prime Minister Abela that there were three deaths last week and the situation may not be as rosy as he is stating. There is still community transmission which is likely to get worse once the tourist season opens, explained the association.
“Numbers this week have been low because the general public has shown great discipline and responsibility despite statements to the contrary by politicians” – said MAM.
Surveys have shown that people are trusting the medical profession more than politicians and it is for this reason that the numbers have come down.
The association emphasised that Rushing to reverse the measures which have kept the virus in check, places additional risk to health, undermines public confidence and may be counterproductive to the economic recovery.
It has also stated that the removal of fines for breaking quarantine, or social distancing rules is not what is expected of a responsible government and there should be no rewards for those who are reckless and put other people’s lives at risk.
MAM said it believes in the rule of law and no politician should undermine the work of the police, of state prosecutors and the judiciary on any offence.
The Medical Association of Malta concluded its statement saying that removing enforcement of rules renders ineffective the tens of thousands of tests being done and makes contact tracing and isolation of cases very difficult.
“An insult to all frontliners” – UĦM
UĦM – Voice of the Workers said that the Prime Minister’s message on Sunday was an insult to all frontliners and all those who abided by the instructions given by the health authorities to safeguard common good.
The Union noted that various mixed messages were being sent to the public and that the Prime Minister’s view diverged from that of the health authorities in a statement on Monday.
The UĦM noted that the easing of measures is happening without the necessary studies. “The Prime Minister is playing Russian roulette,” it claimed.
The union remarked that fines could be appealed before the relevant authority, after the Prime Minister reportedly claimed that the fines would be forgiven.
The union said that since the country was in a transition period and was returning back to “normal”, then a risk assessment should be carried out for each place of work scheduled to open, ensure that front liners are not exposed to a second wave which would lead to their burn out, and ensure that those individuals deemed vulnerable and senior citizens are protected unless the state of public health emergency is lifted.
The union has called on the government to acknowledge the front liner’s work through a monetary compensation. “We expect the government to announce a monetary compensation in the upcoming financial measures which will be announced on 8 June,” it said.
Further the union said that when the wage supplement scheme was agreed upon, the employer was left with the possibility of requesting an exemption from paying €400 to the employee. The union said that it was of the belief that in such cases the government should pay the salary in full to avoid burdening employees further.
If you want to be the first to receive the latest news, download the Newsbook APP here.