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Seychelles and COVID-19: Only 2 positive cases remain; 50 Kenyan health professionals arrive

Victoria, Seychelles | May 5, 2020, Tuesday @ 20:06 in National » HEALTH | By: Sharon Ernesta | Views: 6211
Seychelles and COVID-19: Only 2 positive cases remain; 50 Kenyan health professionals arrive

Two out of the 11 patients confirmed to have Covid-19 are still positive and receiving treatment at the Family Hospital at Perseverance. (Rassin Vannier, Seychelles News Agency)

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(Seychelles News Agency) - Only two out of the 11 patients confirmed to have Covid-19 in Seychelles are still positive and receiving treatment, health officials said Tuesday.

The other nine patients have now all tested negative. Some remain in quarantine whilst others have been discharged and are at home, Public Health Commissioner Jude Gedeon and the chief executive of the Health Care Agency, Danny Louange, told a news conference.

Seventy-one people – all foreigners - are also in quarantine and they include health professionals from Kenya, health experts from the World Health Organisation (WHO) and a group of police officers from Botswana. The officers are in the country through an agreement to build the capacity of the local force.

"We have 50 health professionals sent here by the government of Kenya amongst which 45 are nurses, two public health officers, one lab technician, one responsible for logistics and one doctor," explained Louange.

The health team and the WHO experts arrived on the island nation on Monday to assist with any worst-case scenarios, given that the COVID pandemic is predicted to last up to two more years.

Louange said that the Kenyans will play a crucial role in assisting the local health care providers better prepare in the event of cluster cases and community transmissions resulting in a surge. 

Gedeon urged all to remain vigilant, maintain all the necessary precautions and health measures even if some restrictions were lifted and life begins to slowly get back to normal for the islanders. (Seychelles Nation) Photo License: (CC BY)

After their 14 days of quarantine, the team will be deployed. "Where we feel we will need them are at the screening centres. Like we said we need a safety net to make sure that our health centres and facilities are safe for our patients and safe for our staff. So screening is important for us and it is one measure we are putting in place to strengthen our surveillance," said Louange.

According to the CEO of the Health Care Agency, they will also be deployed to other areas such as in schools to assist with the implementation of public health measures in these institutions.

The experts from WHO are in Seychelles – 115 islands in the western Indian Ocean – to provide assistance to the health authority with its COVID-19 plans.

Gedeon added that the Kenyans' expertise is much-needed in the public health system, not only in the hospitals but at the community level as well.

"They are almost all of them are community trained and we have so much that needs to be done in our communities for preventions. Our plans that we have developed and some by other organisations have so much to do with communities. And that is where prevention is done and not only in the hospitals. Out there in schools at works places and we need the presence of health at schools," said Gedeon, adding that their work will support what the local authority has done in the community.

Gedeon urged all to remain vigilant, maintain all the necessary precautions and health measures even if some restrictions were lifted and life begins to slowly get back to normal for the islanders.

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Tags: Health Care Agency, World Health Organisation, COVID pandemic

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