Medecins Sans Frontiers (MSF) has opened a transit point on Bushrod Island to help deal with suspected Ebola cases in the area before transferring those testing positive to ETUs and sending patients with other conditions to Redemption and other hospitals for further treatment.The Liberian healthcare system has been seriously impacted by the Ebola epidemic. Many hospitals and clinics are closed, and those that are running turn feverish or vomiting patients away for fear that they have Ebola.”Speaking yesterday during the official opening of the unit, the Swiss Field Coordinator of MSF, Sebastian Stew, said the unit is intended to screen suspected Ebola patients seeking treatment at Redemption Hospital.According to him, the unit is constructed to help the Redemption Hospital avoid dealing with Ebola patients through the screening process and keep suspected Ebola cases away from other patients.“We want the people of New Kru Town to take advantage of this opportunity because this is one of the ways that Ebola can be eradicated from Bushrod Island and Liberia. Patients with Ebola symptoms will be sent from the out-patient department of Redemption Hospital to the Transit Unit to have the screening for Ebola.”The Transit Centre is a small short-stay Ebola Treatment Centre (24-72hrs). It is intended to receive patients with signs and symptoms of Ebola in a safe and protected environment, take care of them while allowing nurses to test the patients to confirm Ebola Virus infection before transferring them by ambulance to the MSF Ebola Treatment Center at ELWA, or any other Ebola Treatment Centre, if they are confirmed as Ebola positive.According to Stew, “Redemption is one of the most important hospitals in Monrovia, providing free care for everyone. New Kru Town is an area that has been severely hit by Ebola and it makes sense to set up the Transit Unit there.He continued, “We are hoping to receive the first patient today and as the Redemption Hospital is open, the unit can help greatly to support the more suspected cases. We have 10 units and will make sure that no one infects the other. The unit is large enough for each patient to occupy a room or unit.”Mr. Stew further explained that the unit has a team of health promoters and psychosocial workers, who will be the link between the patients and their families and there will be opportunities for the family to come and visit.The medical director of Redemption Hospital, Dr. Mohammed Sankoh, said he was impressed with the unit as it would help to handle suspected Ebola patients before determining further treatment.He explained that the entire Redemption Hospital would soon be open to the public, especially with the opening of new Ebola transit point nearby.“We want to get all the materials disinfected because the hospital was also run as an Ebola holding unit and most of the patients diagnosed were Ebola patients. This transit point is very important as it gave us ample time to reopen the hospital,” he said.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)
…as Jagdeo warns nation now subject to more rigorous FATF/CFATF scrutinyAttorney General and Legal Affairs Minister Basil Williams has misled the Guyanese nation, more specifically the business community and local financial institutions, by insinuating that Guyana was free and clear with respect to the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) and the Caribbean Financial Action Task Force (CFATF) regime.Former President Bharrat Jagdeo said the false sense of security that Williams attempted to foist on the nation could in fact cause the country to repeat mistakes and jeopardise major sectors of the economy, specifically the economic sector.Jagdeo gave the damning warning on Thursday, and said Williams had attempted to give the impression that Guyana was free and clear of the FATF/CFATF regimes since the country had successfully exited the third round of evaluations by the international community with regard to Guyana’s Anti-Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism (AML/CFT) regime.“This is not so” according to the Opposition Leader, who said that while Guyana has, in fact, concluded its third-round evaluation, it was now subjected to a fourth round of evaluation, which would entail more rigorous compliance measures, including the actual prosecution of money laundering offences.“What will happen is under this review, they will be required to go after actual cases,” Jagdeo said.He suggested that instead of the Special Organised Crime Unit (SOCU) obtaining a list of nine former Ministers from the Ministry of the Presidency to target, “they will have to go after people that engage in money laundering and if they don’t, they will fail and jeopardise the financial system”.Jagdeo recalled too that Williams had hinted at mutual evaluations following the successful exit from the third round of evaluations, but that was a misnomer, since Guyana would not be evaluating FATF or CFATF, as it would be the other way around.The former President said the fourth round of evaluations relates to technical compliance and not simply adhering to recommendations made and that will be difficult to attain.“We still have a lot of work to do,” he said.The Opposition Leader noted that Williams had said “we were free and clear…we were happy and good with the international community regarding money laundering issues”, but “this is not so”.According to Jagdeo, “we may very well find that we are not compliant in applying this (AML/CFT) Act” when again evaluated.He used the occasion to again bemoan the fact that the predicament that the country was in could have been avoided had A Partnership for National Unity and the Alliance For Change (APNU/AFC), while in Opposition, supported the amendments promulgated by the then Government.“We could have avoided a lot of this had they supported us from the beginning when we made two attempts to pass recommendations that would have made us compliant.”Speaking to the false sense of security that Williams attempted to finagle on the nation, Jagdeo pointed to recent statements by the Attorney General, which suggested that local financial institutions were now able to transact business without enhanced security measures in place, highlighting that that was “not true”.He elaborated saying if one were to venture to a local bank, it would be observed that there was no change in the requirements for transacting business, including the opening of accounts or the sending and receiving of monies overseas.Local financial institutions, including local banks, have not seen any dramatic change in their relationship with correspondent international banks as a result of Williams’ pronouncements, Jagdeo said.“We cannot play games with the future of the financial sector…A thriving economy is built on a solid, sound financial system and sector,” the Opposition Leader stressed.He warned too that by looking to score cheap political points, the Attorney General ran the risk of jeopardising the local financial sector, and this was further compounded by the international trend towards “de-risking”.This refers to international financial institutions and countries looking to distance themselves from non-compliant regimes. “If that happens and it snowballs out of control, I had spoken about us going back to Stone Age in terms of financial sector development and growth,” he said.