The Opposition Leader says there is an urgent need for suspected COVID-19 tests to be significantly increased here in T&T.
She says it is unacceptable that only 688 samples have been tested locally thus far out of the 20,000 exposed persons in the past month.
Mrs. Kamla Persad-Bissessar says global statistics show that countries which have prioritized early and large scale testing have had low mortality rates, and are most successful in containing the spread.
She has called for:
• Widespread testing of all primary, secondary and tertiary health care workers deemed to be exposed/at risk for Covid-19 from any positive patient thus far.
• Re-testing of all persons with symptoms consistent with infection who initially tested negative.
• Posthumous testing of all persons who died in the target period of flu-like or related Covid-19 symptoms, and who were not tested before their deaths. This is for the protection and peace of mind of the families of the deceased and health care workers who may have treated these persons.
• Re-testing of all persons who have recovered from infection and were deemed to be adequately immune.
The UNC leader is recommending that private medical labs across the country be allowed to undertake testing to assist with the large-scale exercise.
She says based the GIS location map revealed by the Ministry of Health on Thursday depicts the potentially very wide spread of COVID-19 in Chaguanas, the East-West Corridor and Port of Spain.