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Source: President of the Republic of Belarus

8 October 2020

The preparedness of the healthcare system to confront the rise in the incidence of COVID-19 and seasonal respiratory diseases was discussed at the meeting hosted by Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko on 8 October.The meeting was attended by high-ranking officials of the Healthcare Ministry, representatives of Belmedpreparaty Company, the Belarusian Center of Hygiene, Epidemiology and Public Health, leading infectious disease specialists from Belarusian universities.According to the head of state, top on the agenda are measures to protect people’s health amid the new epidemiological surge of seasonal infections, including the coronavirus infection. “Obviously, it has entered into an intensive phase of spread again. The second wave is coming (I think this is the second wave, and not the splash of the first one). Part of our neighbors are close to spring peaks of morbidity. A similar trend, and you know it, can be seen worldwide,” Aleksandr Lukashenko said. “We do not stand aside. We don’t have such a rapid growth, but it exists. Therefore, today we will consider several blocks of questions concerning the new epidemiological reality in which we all have to live and exist.”The President asked those present at the meeting to inform him about the current state of affairs in the healthcare system. “How fast is the virus spreading this time in comparison with what we saw in the past?” the head of state wondered. “What can you say about the hospital capacity, the availability of equipment, medications, PPE?”He drew special attention to the personnel issue. “I am told that in spite of the tough restrictions of this year more than Br300 million worth of support has been already paid to the healthcare personnel working with COVID-19 patients,” the Belarusian leader said. He stressed that the state will continue to provide this assistance on a fair basis. “I reiterate that people working with such patients and fighting against infectious diseases should have their money. This is a special sphere, everything can happen. People are at risk, and we must take care of our doctors,” Aleksandr Lukashenko said. “But there should not be any exaggerations either, people should not get financial bonuses for nothing. This is inadmissible.”“Injustice is always offensive for people. Therefore, keep an eye on those issues,” the President added.

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