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Aug 24, 2021

Nurses on Leave Called Back to Work

Darrell Spencer

Last week, a significant number of the healthcare workers at the San Ignacio Town Hospital and Guerra Polyclinic in Benque were infected with COVID and had to go into isolation.  That number rose this week to around twenty-five, creating an immediate shortage of personnel at the two facilities.  President of the Nurses’ Association of Belize, Darrell Spencer, told News Five that healthcare workers who were on leave are displeased over instructions from the Ministry of Health and Wellness to return to work to fill the void. Spencer criticized the government for not consulting with the frontline workers first.


Darrell Spencer, President, Nurses Association of Belize

“They seem to believe themselves as the owners of the workers and that is not how it works, man. I work for a vacation; I work for a salary. And while I understand that we want to – and all healthcare personnel – we are there for our patients. We want to provide the coverage, but at some point in time we are human and we need our break; we need to rest. So, to come in and just say you know what, Cayo or San Ignacio is having an issue with staffing so the entire nation must now cancel their vacation plans, it’s unfair and it is just going to create more frustration among the staff.”


Marion Ali

“I hear your concern, but is the Minister within his right to do so considering that there is a pandemic and also that frontline workers are considered essential workers?”


Darrell Spencer

“Not everything that is right is correct. See? That is the problem. Even when we speak to the vaccine, not because it is your right that means it is the right thing to do.”

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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