There’s a lot on his plate right now, but Malta’s Deputy Prime Minister and Health Minister still had time to show his disapproval over the actions of some irresponsible Maltese healthcare professionals.
Earlier this week, an emergency Air Malta flight had to be sent to Jordan to pick up 14 Maltese nurses who were stranded there after ignoring advice against unnecessary travel and deciding that a global pandemic made for the perfect time for a bunch of them to go on holiday.
While they didn’t break any laws or rules, many in Malta were incensed by their thoughtless actions, especially after one of them uploaded a badly-received post mocking the quarantine and bragging about the fact that they had travelled despite the coronavirus outbreak.
Interviewed on TVM’s Dissett, Chris Fearne was asked about the incident, which not only angered many in Malta who are currently having to deal with finding themselves alone for long periods in quarantine but cost the country in sending a plane to bring them back.
While saying that we are all made from “flesh and blood, and doctors, nurses, specialists need a holiday too, and some also make mistakes,” he didn’t hold back from showing how he felt about those who didn’t take this pandemic seriously.
“What annoyed me, and what annoyed most people is that we had people abroad, we assisted in bringing them back, and there were some who showed off about it and posted about it on Facebook like they were almost bragging about it, as if it was an adventure,” Fearne said.
“I think that many people were annoyed. I won’t mince my words – it annoyed me and I hope that such things are not repeated.”
Air Malta does not operate flights to Jordan, and had to obtain special flight permission to recover the 14 ITU nurses that had gone on holiday there.
Fearne went on to say that while he understood how difficult the situation was, he urged for cooperation from the Maltese medical community and urged them not to travel and stay in Malta when they were needed the most.
“We know this is a difficult time. As we tell doctors, nurses, and staff, we are protecting them even providing them with quarters in case they don’t want to go back home so as not go take the virus home with them, although hospital staff is safe because they wear protective clothing,” he said.