‘Additional COVID-19 protective gear coming’—Tufton

Dr Christopher Tufton testing a ‘temperature gun’ ahead of the coronavirus outbreak in Jamaica.

Minister of Health and Wellness Dr Christopher Tufton has informed that although there is an adequate supply of protective equipment in inventory for front-line medical staff, additional supplies are slated to arrive in the island shortly.

“[On Wednesday] we had a meeting with the executive of the Medical Association of Jamaica (MAJ). The Prime Minister chaired the virtual meeting and we went through the issue of personal protective equipment (PPE),” the Minister said.

Dr Tufton was responding to questions posed by Opposition Spokesperson on Health, Dr Morais Guy, regarding the adequacy of PPE in the health sector, during a Special Select Committee meeting to review developments relating to COVID-19, in the House, on Thursday (April 2).

“I think there was general consensus, because we presented the actual inventory list that we have adequate supplies to last us two to three weeks based on the usage rate that was determined, and that in the process there were additional supplies on order and some would be coming in next week and the following week,” the minister said.

He explained that there were “one or two items we felt may have been under the two to three weeks, and so we had to do some rush arrangements to get them. I think one of them is face shields”. Tufton said the Ministry is looking at the possibility of engaging a local manufacturer to make and supply the ministry with face shields.