Washington, United States (CMC) — The director of the Pan American Well being Group (PAHO), Dr Carissa F Etienne has referred to as on the authorities within the Caribbean to be absolutely ready for the 2021 hurricane season.
Dr Etienne warned that the COVID-19 pandemic and the potential devastation of excessive winds and flooding make preparation much more crucial than traditional.
“We should safeguard our nations and territories in opposition to the twin risk of COVID-19 and the hurricane season. We should make sure that well being companies are absolutely operational to save lots of lives and shield the well-being of populations earlier than, throughout and after hurricanes,” Dr Etienne stated.
“We should additionally ensure that emergency care, hospitalisation, ICU (Intensive Care Unit) beds, laboratories, and quarantine and isolation centres are protected and purposeful,” she added.
The Atlantic hurricane season started on June 1, with forecasters predicting a 60 per cent probability of above-normal exercise.
The US Nationwide Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) forecast is for 13 to twenty named storms, together with six to 10 hurricanes and three to 5 main hurricanes.
PAHO stated it’s working to supply emergency provides, and help in securing crucial amenities in nations in Latin America and the Caribbean.
PAHO stated it can maintain a preparedness assembly on Thursday with representatives from the catastrophe coordination companies of all nations within the Americas, together with the Caribbean.
The web assembly to establish assets and modify preparedness and readiness plans will embody panellists from the World Meteorological Group (WMO), NOAA´s Nationwide Hurricane Middle, the Coordination Middle for Pure Catastrophe Prevention in Central America (CEPREDENAC) and the Ministry of Well being of Guatemala.
PAHO stated late final month it met with catastrophe administration officers from seven Central American nations and the Dominican Republic to analyse the primary catastrophe danger discount wants.
Dr Etienne urged officers, significantly these within the Caribbean, Central America, Mexico and northern South America to replace nationwide hurricane response plans, and conduct simulation workout routines.
She stated nations ought to refine evacuation plans, taking into account extra measures for bodily distancing and additional hygiene and sanitation in shelters.
The Dominican-born PAHO director urged nations to strengthen well being care companies by guaranteeing that surge employees and important provides and protecting tools shall be available when wanted.
She stated these measures and actions are particularly vital for nations and territories nonetheless struggling the implications of the extremely damaging 2020 hurricane season.
“Hurricanes ETA and IOTA in 2020 affected 9.9 million folks and did appreciable harm to medical infrastructure particularly in Honduras, Guatemala, Nicaragua and Colombia,” stated Dr Ciro Ugarte, PAHO’s Director of Well being Emergencies
“Between final yr’s storms and the continued pandemic, preparedness and danger discount actions are extra crucial than ever.”
Up to now few weeks, PAHO stated most nations in Central America have reported surges in COVID-19 instances, including that many Caribbean nations and territories have additionally reported spikes.
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