2 Jul, 2022 @ 09:53
1 min read

A Covid cold front: Gibraltar health boss warns of unexpected winter coronavirus consequences

A judge has ordered the Valencian Ministry of Health to compensate 150 Alicante health workers who did not have any proper PPE equipment in the early phase of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Alicante court says doctors, nurses, and health support staff are entitled to compensation amounts varying between €5,000 and €49,180 for 'personal and moral damages'. There has been no comment from the Valencian government or Health Ministry. It's presumed that an appeal will be launched against the ruling. The lawsuit was filed against the regional Health Ministry by the Sindicato Medico(Medical Union). It claimed compensation on behalf of 150 Alicante area members for the 'non-compliance' of the Ministry for not providing safety protection between March and May 2020. The Alicante court ruling obliges each worker to get €5,000 if 'they were forced to work without adequate protection elements'. The payout is €15,000 for 'each workers who had to go into isolation if they were in contact with anybody infected with COVID-19'. A €35,000 payment is ordered for any worker 'infected with COVID-19 but who did not require hospital admission'. Any health worker who did catch the coronavirus and was hospitalised will get the highest amount of €49,180. The Sindicato Medico says that it is pleased by the recognition the court has given its members and pointing out the 'negligent attitude towards health and safety' of health workers. Similar claims have been filed in other courts in the Valencian Community.
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By Livia Cockerell

DIRECTOR of Public Health Dr Helen Carter has warned that Covid could have unexpected consequences this winter.

The pandemic seems to have impacted the patterns of other diseases, for example, Gibraltar is still recording cases of flu although flu-season normally ends by March or April.

“We´re not sure why this is happening but, typically, we end up with more respiratory infections in the winter, whether that be flu, respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), the common cold as well, so we are anticipating that it is going to be a difficult winter ahead,” said Carter.

Currently, the BA.5 variant is causing a surge in cases in Gibraltar. Concerns have arisen as far fewer people are regularly testing and the virus is continuously evolving. However, due to the vaccination programme, most patients only have mild symptoms and the number of hospitalisations is steady.

Moreover, these summer peaks of Covid-19 could be positive as it could increase immunity before the winter months.

Carter claims that, at present, she is still waiting for the UK government to confirm whether or not Gibraltar will be offered booster jabs.

“We want to reassure everyone that we are in a very different place this year,” she stated.

“The vaccines are working well enough to prevent most of the hospitalisations and severe consequences of the disease.”


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