OECS Media Release
Tuesday, March 24, 2020 — Several Member States have reported their first imported cases, and contact tracing, testing and quarantine measures are being taken. It is expected that with further testing – more cases will be identified.
The Commission of the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) continues to mobilise efforts with multiple key stakeholders to address the COVID-19 pandemic and protect the citizens in the Eastern Caribbean.
OECS collaborates with Facebook and CARPHA to provide a coordinated Regional communications response
The OECS, CARPHA, and Facebook have agreed to mobilise efforts towards ensuring the dissemination of reliable messaging on the response to COVID-19 in the region through the use of the Facebook social media platform.
On March 14 2020, the Director General of the OECS, Dr. Didacus Jules, convened a virtual meeting with the Executive Director of the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA), Dr. Joy St. John; the Public Policy Manager for the Caribbean at Facebook, Claudia Giraldo; and the Strategic Advisor on Information and Communications Technology to the OECS, Rhea Yaw Ching.
To this end, the team at Facebook will donate ad credits to facilitate broader dissemination of further COVID-19 communications campaigns and also agreed to provide technical training to communications staff of the OECS Commission and CARPHA.
OECS secures USD 20,000 donation from Sagicor
On March 14 2020, the OECS Director General Dr. Didacus Jules officially met with the Chief Executive Officer of the Sagicor Life Insurance Company for the Eastern Caribbean, Donald Austin, to discuss areas of collaboration as it pertains to the regional response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Following a presentation on the assessment of medical equipment needed in the OECS region, supported by a financial pre-assessment, both parties agreed on a USD 20,000 donation from Sagicor. The donation represents 50% of the regional need and will facilitate the purchase of infrared thermometers and the screening of people infected by the COVID-19.
OECS secures support from Cuba
Health practitioners in the OECS will benefit from training and support for care and management from the Cuban authorities to strengthen the local response to the COVID-19 threat.
Cooperating with International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
The OECS is working in close collaboration with IAEA to support the accessibility of Member States to diagnostic equipment and tests in line with the recommendations of the World Health Organisation (WHO).
Coordinating the distribution of Direct Relief donations to other OECS Member States
On March 14, 2020 staff members of the OECS Pharmaceutical Procurement Services and the OECS Facilities Unit coordinated the reception, repacking and distribution of multiple equipments donated by Direct Relief to support the response to the COVID-19 threat in the OECS Member states. The donated items included personal protect equipment (PPE), N95 masks, gloves, and hurricane preparedness backpacks (HPPs) among others.
The OECS urges each citizen to observe the recommendations and thus to limit the expansion of the pandemic which is a collective responsibility.