The president of the Regional Government of the Azores, Vasco Cordeiro, alerted this Friday to the “serious and high risk” that the region runs from registering new cases of Covid-19 “every time” that an airplane arrives in the archipelago.
The president of the Azorean executive responded to demands about changes to the model of health services in Pico, during the island council of Pico, which took place at the end of Friday, as part of the government’s statutory visit to the island.
The claims aimed at the 24-hour operation of immediate life support services (SIV) and the extension of the hours of permanent assistance in the municipalities of Lajes and São Roque.
“Make no mistake. This is not just a joke. We continue to have a serious and high risk of having Covid cases,” said Vasco Cordeiro, stressing that this risk arises from “every time a plane enters an airport in the Azores”.
Vasco Cordeiro considered that the “priority” in the current phase is “to be alert in this pandemic war”, and, “after this phase”, the regional executive will be able to “debate” and “analyze” the suggestions for changes in health services in islands in the region.
Regarding health care in Pico, the leader of the Azorean Government referred that the “only political option at stake here” is to ensure that the island is able to be “prepared” to respond to an eventual Covid-19 outbreak.
The President of the Government referred that the executive’s priority is “defending the health of the Azoreans”, followed by the need to “defend employment and foster economy in the midst of this gale” of the Covid-19 pandemic.
During the meeting, the president of the Association of Municipalities on the island of Pico, Mark Silveira, stressed that there is a proposal by some health professionals for the creation of a permanent service in Lajes and São Roque.
“This is an issue not to be played with [a saúde]. I have been doing politics for many years, but I don’t like doing politics. What is at stake is the health and life of people “, said Silveira.
At the end of the council, the secretary of the presidency for Parliamentary Affairs, Berto Messias, stressed that it is not possible to have a discussion on the health sector without forgetting the context of the Covid-19 pandemic.
“It is not possible to have an in-depth discussion about what the health sector is today on Pico Island or any other island in the region, without neglecting the fact that we are in an abnormal situation, being in a context where we have to deal with a pandemic. “, said the regional secretary.
Berto Messias highlighted the evolution of health services on the island of Pico, in terms of human resources and infrastructure.
“When we discuss health in Pico, we cannot forget all the work and growth that this sector has had here in Pico, both from the point of view of human resources, as well as infrastructure and equipment”, he said.
At the end of the meeting, the president of the Pico island council, Rui Lima Silveira, made a “positive assessment” of the meeting, highlighting the need to continue to “trust the work” carried out by the Regional Government to contain the Covid-19 pandemic. .
The Regional Government arrived this Friday in the island of Pico to make a statutory visit of two days, fulfilling the Political-Administrative Statute of the Azores.
The Azores currently have five active cases of Covid-19: four in São Miguel and one in Terceira.
In total, 152 cases were recorded in the region, of which 132 recovered and 16 died.
Portugal accounts for at least 1,598 deaths associated with Covid-19 in 43,156 confirmed cases of infection, according to the latest bulletin from the Directorate-General for Health (DGS).
The Covid-19 pandemic has already claimed more than 522,000 deaths and infected more than 10.92 million people in 196 countries and territories, according to a report by the France-Presse news agency (AFP).