Nicaragua’s coronavirus preparations
News from Nicaragua | Tuesday, 17 March 2020 |
Officials from the Pan American Health Organisation (PAHO) have praised Nicaragua’s preparations to prevent, contain and treat coronavirus cases.
While no cases have been registered in the country as of 17 March, the Nicaragua government is putting in place ‘national action plan to ensure the lives, health and well-being of Nicaraguans and visitors.’
Central America regional plans
Nicaragua’s plans are part of the government’s commitment to a joint Central American region (SICA) strategy entitled ‘Central America united against the coronavirus.’ This has been agreed by all member states and ministries in co-ordination with the Pan American Health Organisation (PAHO) and the World Health Organisation (WHO).
Across the region as of 16 March, a total of 145 cases and two deaths have been recorded with the highest numbers in Panama (69) and Costa Rica (41). In addition to Nicaragua no cases have been registered in El Salvador or Belize.
The Central America Bank of Integration (BCIE) has provided contingency funds of US$1 million for each country.
Nicaragua mobilises health professionals and brigadistas
This week in Nicaragua an early detection network is mobilising 3,928 health professionals and volunteer brigades to test 70,000 people and provide preventative education and medical attention through door to door visits, mobile clinics and health fairs in 905 communities.
Extra testing and treatment equipment is being provided to local health centres and hospitals. Full testing is also in place at airports and land borders.
Pan American Health Organisation praises Nicaragua’s health model and preparations
During a visit to Nicaragua in the second week of March, a delegation from the PAHO toured hospitals in Managua, Chinandega, Leon, Grenada and Masaya where facilities are being prepared to treat patients.
PAHO representative Alexander Florencio confirmed that the Nicaraguan government is taking action to ensure that "the best conditions are being prepared" to prevent and contain a coronavirus outbreak. He went on to state that "It is fundamental to recognise that the country has a health system based on a family and community model able to identify a suspected case and an outbreak, which will be quickly referred through the health system. "
Alexander Florencio went on to express concern about rumours and speculation being disseminated through some media and social networks. ‘It is our responsibility to say that provisions being made [by the government] have incorporated all PAHO recommendations. ‘
On 12 March, PAHO representative Ana Tresure congratulated the Nicaraguan government on the preparations being made jointly with PAHO.