Highlights from today’s (28.04.2020) Virtual Health Media Conference


In case you missed it, here are the key takeaways from this morning’s Virtual Media Conference.

  • Minister of Health, Terrence Deyalsingh, indicated that 4 health care workers are currently residing at the NAPA facility with 12 more persons to be added to the number shortly. These persons would have worked around COVID-19 patients but have NOT tested positive for the virus. They are being quarantined at the facility for 2 weeks to ensure the safety of their families.
  • According to Minister Deyalsingh, at the start of the COVID-19 restrictions, ONLY elective surgeries were postponed, emergency surgeries continued as normal. However, the Minister said that after discussions, elective surgeries are set to begin again soon.
  • Minister Deyalsingh stated that 4 ventilators are expected to be transported to Tobago from Trinidad later this week.
  • The Minister also indicated that he’s been assured by the Finance Minister that once requests for funding for parallel healthcare system are made, it will be granted. Minister Deyalsingh stated that he sees no money troubles for the parallel system at this point in time.
  • Principal Medical Officer of Epidemiology, Dr. Naresh Nandram said that only certain tests have been recommended by the WHO and are recognized by the Health Ministry. Of these, the “Gold Standard” diagnostic testing is what T&T has been using as opposed to the unreliable serological tests, however, diagnostic testing requires highly trained staff, specialized laboratories and takes several hours to complete.
  • Dr. Nandram also indicated that the UWI testing site is currently in the final stage of verification and will be up and running soon.
  • Consultant/Cardiothoracic Surgeon, Dr. Mark West said that COVID-19 is a multifaceted virus that affects several systems other than the respiratory system. In fact, several patients of all ages presented blood clots due to the virus. Dr. West also stated that due to the newness of the virus, there is no way of knowing yet, if COVID-19 has any long term effects on the body.