GARD warns Gambia is unprepared for covid-19 2nd wave

Feb 1, 2021, 12:35 PM

Association of Resident Doctors (GARD) – The Gambia has said that in The Gambia, “we spent most of 2020 on lockdown with businesses and schools closed and our fragile hospitals working on half capacity, yet we registered over 3000 confirmed Covid-19 cases and over 100 Covid-19 related deaths.”

“We currently have a total of 108 active cases and rising as well as the confirmation of the new deadly variant in the country”, added the association.

It also said that the health fraternity lost three of its members and had more than 36 members who were positive despite working at half capacity which “tells us how vulnerable and poorly protected we are.”

GARD said its members had to volunteer to run a virtual Covid-19 clinic to help manage and cope with the large numbers of active cases that were on isolation outside of the treatment and isolation centers.

“The second wave is upon us, with more than 100 active cases. The presence of the new deadly variant in the country shows how unprepared we are.”

According to GARD, they are disappoint and displeased to notice the ongoing concerts, political rallies, launching of parties, weddings, naming ceremonies being performed or planned at different venues, with people refusing to be quarantined or isolated, escaping from treatment centers despite being confirmed positive with the virus and further mingling with family members and the rest of the community.

“We have already stopped wearing masks, socially distancing and regular washing of hands, showing how we have quickly forgotten our loved ones lost to this pandemic, including three Health care workers,” the Association further warned.

It thus urged government and ministries to not fall complacent with the ongoing public gatherings.

“The health workers are sacrificing their lives to ensure that the nation's health standards are maintained. It will be disastrous if heed is not taken and public gatherings are banned, masks wearing reinforced and hand washing put into practice.”

“We urge the government to implement measures to make sure preventive measures are observed. The ministry of health should strengthen the treatment centers to help improve management of critically ill Covid-19 patients.”

“The vulnerability of our healthcare system is an open secret, quickly forgetting the pandemic is still here will cost us more dear lives and further weaken our health sector (both in quality and capacity).”