The public deserves one unequivocal message
The Malta Federation of Professional Associations (MFPA) would like to voice its concern with regard to statements made on Sunday 31 May. Health authorities have been guiding us throughout these months to ensure the flattening of the curve of the Covid-19 pandemic and limit the number of cases and fatalities. They were very successful and Malta was even rated as one of the countries that best handled the pandemic. All of this instilled faith and full trust of the general public in the health authorities that the measures set were done in the best interest of public health.
Current evidence by infection control experts shows that the risk of spreading the virus is still present. Based on the facts provided by experts, MFPA feels it is highly premature to state that Covid-19 is a thing of the past. Such a statement gives an illusion to the public and jeopardises the fruit of the measures and sacrifices that have been done. On 23 May MFPA issued a statement to express caution when relaxing certain measures. A strong economy is indeed important but this cannot be achieved without a healthy workforce.
The country is equipped with the institutions and relevant entities to evaluate and take decisions in the best interest of society and these should be allowed to exercise their executive powers without interference. We witnessed a joint effort by the whole public who worked hand in hand with public health to abide by rules while learning to live in this new norm. Rules and legal notices were issued to protect everyone. MFPA believes that those found to have blatantly broken the law should not be exonerated from the respective fine. Anything short of this would be an affront to all the Health authorities who worked incessantly and to all front liners and healthcare workers who made huge sacrifices, often living away from their loved ones, to continue being of service to our country. This is an offence to the general public itself who made the sacrifice to stay inside and to businesses who suffered losses.
In line with the previous statements issued by MFPA, once again we strongly appeal to the government to follow the advice of professionals, professional organisations and their expertise. It is also crucial that the public receives one unequivocal message and not conflicting ones from different authorities. Let us not jeopardise all the effort everyone has done to keep Malta safe.
This statement is endorsed by member organisations of MFPA: Association of Podiatrists of Malta, Association of Speech-Language Pathologists, Chamber of Engineers, Dental Association of Malta, Kamra tal-Periti, Malta Association of Counselling for Professions, Medical Association of Malta, Malta Association of Occupational Therapists, Malta Association of Physiotherapists, Malta Association of Professional Conservators and Restorers, Maltese Association of Social Workers, Maltese Association of Youth Workers, Malta Chamber of Pharmacists, Malta Chamber of Psychologists, Malta Institute of Accountants, Malta Veterinary Association and Society of Medical Radiographers.