by Fernelle Neptune, Ministry of Health
Saint Lucia recently received a donation of 40 beds and 40 mattresses from the French Government to aid in combating the COVID-19 pandemic.
Deputy Permanent Secretary of the Department of Health & Wellness, Jenny Daniel believes the generosity displayed by the Government of France is testament to the strong relationship between the two countries.
“In this instance the French government through the university hospital CHUM, and La Menarde Hospital has generously donated 40 beds and 40 mattresses which are to be utilised to equip our health institutions and therefore further fortify the health sector to improve capacity to respond to this and any crucial threats.”
Minister for Health and Wellness, Sen. Hon. Mary Isaac recognised Martinique’s continued efforts at strengthening Saint Lucia’s own health sector.
“Prior to this crisis and throughout we have always received generous assistance from our neighbouring island or should I say our sister islands of Martinque through the French government. We get training for our healthcare workers constantly and consistently from Martinique”
According to the Charge d’Affaires of the French Embassy, Marc Mertillo, the arrival of the hospital beds was as a result of the collaboration of several agencies including the French armed forces, staff of the French Embassy and the university hospital of Luminare.
“Frankly speaking France wanted to express its clear and strong solidarity with Saint Lucians through the various gestures at a time when the country is experiencing an upsurge in the number of COVID-19 cases. The solidarity exists between the two countries that are so close where strong ties are not only geographical.”
The kinship between Saint Lucia and France date back to the French Revolution as Saint Lucia was the first country to recognize the revolution, even before Haiti.
As a result, the French republic referred to Saint Lucia as Sainte Lucie les fidèles or Saint Lucia the faithful.
Headline photo caption: Health and Wellness Minister Mary Isaac and Charge d’Affaires of the French Embassy, Marc Mertillo.