Cyprus’ services ready to handle coronavirus cases, says Health Minister

Cyprus’ Ministry of Health Services are ready to handle any coronavirus incidents, in case the virus spreads to Cyprus, Minister of Health Constatinos Ioannou said on Monday.

Speaking after a Cabinet meeting, the Minister said that during the last few days, the Ministry activated a task force of the Infectious Disease Control Unit, to monitor developments around the virus.

He also said that the Ministry is following the instructions of the World Health Organization and activated the protocols that are appropriate for the handling of this kind of incidents. All health professionals were given instructions about which course of action to take, in case they are suspicious about an incident or if they are dealing with a confirmed case, he added.

Health officials in ports and airports of the Republic of Cyprus, in cooperation with the Migration Department and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs provide to passengers coming from China to Cyprus, through other airports, a specific questionnaire. If there is a suspicious case, then the relevant protocols are activated, the Minister added.

Ioannou said finally that a meeting took place on Monday morning, to coordinate action between Health Services and the State Health Services Organisation, for hospitals to be prepared to handle a potential incident.

Meanwhile, in statements to the press after a meeting which took place at Larnaka airport, Elisavet Constantinou, Director of Health and Medical Services at the Ministry of Health told the press that all services and authorities on the island are coordinating and collaborating as to how to handle passengers who arrive from China or other affected areas. She explained that these passengers will be screened and examined by nurses at the airports.

She said that the meeting did not examine the installation of thermal cameras at this point, adding that this possibility will be examined at a later stage.

Constantinou said that if a coronavirus case is detected, a specific protocol will be followed. She added that similar instructions were given to port authorities.


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