Triage system on pier is called for
Questions have been raised over whether a triage system could operate at Victoria Pier during the cruise ship season to assess visitors and help mitigate against the potential impact of the coronavirus.
North Mainland councillor Andrea Manson raised the issue at this week’s meeting of the integration joint board.
She said cruise ships brought “enormous pressure on the Gilbert Bain Hospital”.
It came during discussions around next year’s budget.
The meeting heard talks had been held at the emergency planning forum, which was said to be satisfied sufficient plans were in place.
Earlier in the meeting Allison Duncan questioned whether there was any contingency budget planned to deal with a potential outbreak of COVID-19.
Finance official Karl Williamson said costs would have to be absorbed in the short term, although he hoped the UK government would later come to cover additional expenses.
Director of community health Simon Bokor-Ingram told the meeting: “At the end of the year, when it comes to the final reckoning, if there’s any government support then – as long as we can quantify our costs – then we’ll have a case.”
North Mainland councillor Emma Macdonald said the virus was “no different from flu.”
“We don’t know how bad it’s going to be. We don’t know who’s going to get it.
“I think we have to keep it in perspective. We manage things like the flu all the time.”