Health Minister Chris Fearne has appealed to the nation’s religious sentiment in his latest call on people to respect the COVID-19 health guidelines.
“We expect that Malta will have a vaccine in the early months of 2021 and that we’ll be able to distribute it to everyone within the span of six months,” Fearne said in Parliament tonight. “Until then, social distancing, mask-wearing, hygiene and solidarity is important. This is a time of national unity, a time of sacrifice but also a time to show much we care about each other.”
“We’re a Christian nation and now is the time to show it by showing how much we care about each other. Whether we’re successful [in combating COVID-19] or not doesn’t only depend on the government but on each and every one of us.”
Malta confirmed 218 new COVID-19 cases today, the highest daily rise since the start of the pandemic last March.
Fearne hinted that new restrictions could be on their way, stating that “we’re taking and will keep on taking measures to keep the pandemic under control as much as possible”.
He also confirmed that a rapid testing hub will open at the airport next week, which will be able to increase the testing rate of passengers from ‘amber list’ countries fivefold. Another rapid testing hub will also open up next week at an unspecified location in the north of Malta.
Fearne also referred to how the COVID-19 case management team has boosted its human resources; only 30 or so people worked there up until three weeks ago but that 60 now work there and the staff count will soon increase to 100.
He also confirmed that Malta has reached a deal with Italy and Czechia, which will see them grant the country with 350 doses of the antiviral medication Remdesivir, over and above the 530 that have already been allotted to Malta as per an EU deal.
The Health Minister also reached out to relatives of COVID-19 victims, saying that every death is a tragedy which pains healthcare workers.
“Our job as professionals and politicians is to heal the sick, ease suffering and save lives. When a life is lost, we all feel the pain, and we offer our solidarity to all those who have passed through this ugly situation.”
What do you make of Chris Fearne’s statement tonight?