Health August 21, 2023 | 4:17 pm

Public Health activated the Contingency Plan for the threat of Tropical Storm Franklin

Santo Domingo.- The Ministry of Public Health (MSP) has taken proactive steps by activating its National Contingency Plan to mitigate the potential impact of tropical storm Franklin, anticipated for Tuesday, August 22, as forecasted by the National Meteorological Office (ONAMET).

Leading a coordination meeting with vice ministers and directors of the institution, Minister of Health, Dr. Daniel Rivera, instructed the Rapid Response Teams to initiate actions in line with the “Assessment of Damages and Analysis of Health Needs in Emergency Situations (EDAN-Salud).” This collaboration takes place in coordination with the Emergency Operations Center (COE).

Dr. Rivera emphasized the paramount importance of safeguarding the public’s health. He urged all personnel to be ready to respond to any emerging emergency situations arising from the impending weather phenomenon, as indicated by meteorological predictions. Preventing disease transmission is crucial, as episodes such as diarrhea, dengue fever, malaria, and other ailments tend to escalate during hurricane season and heavy rainfall periods. The implementation of effective health measures can mitigate the potential consequences.

Dr. Gina Estrella, Director of Risk Management and Disaster Care, noted that the Ministry of Health has been in a continuous session due to the looming threat of the storm. This state of readiness extends to both headquarters and Provincial Directorates and Health Areas. Dr. Estrella called upon local authorities to take appropriate actions to ensure the well-being and safety of residents in their jurisdictions. Special attention is given to provinces under alert, particularly Pedernales and Dajabón, where the storm’s impact is expected to be most pronounced.

Assured provision of medicines, supplies, and necessary resources is a priority for the Ministry to effectively assist those in need during the crisis.

Key actions include:

– Activation of the COE-Health in a continuous session.
– Ongoing monitoring from the Situation Room of the Directorate of Risk Management and Disaster Assistance.
– Activation of Provincial Health Committees, integration of Provincial and Municipal COEs, and response plan activation for hospitals in respective jurisdictions.
– Evaluation of temporary shelters identified by Civil Defense for authorization.
– Inventory of available resources for response needs.
– Activation of local rapid response teams.

The Ministry of Health underscores the importance of preventive measures during the rainy season. In particular, increased occurrences of acute respiratory diseases, epidemics, and the potential spread of diseases like dengue, leptospirosis, acute diarrheal disease, Covid-19, and others. Precautionary steps include practicing permanent hand washing, ensuring the safety of drinking water, maintaining hygienic practices for food and utensils, using tissues when sneezing, protecting vulnerable groups, and being equipped with necessary medications.

The Emergency Operations Center has placed the entire country under alert. The southern coast is on red alert, the central region and extreme east are on yellow alert, and the north and northeast coasts are on green alert. The forecast anticipates heavy rainfall across the nation due to the direct impact of the storm.

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