This document presents considerations from the perspective of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) for implementing the shielding approach in humanitarian settings as outlined in guidance documents focused on camps, displaced populations and low-resource settings.1,2 This approach has never been documented and has raised questions and concerns among humanitarian partners who support response activities in these settings. The purpose of this document is to highlight potential implementation challenges of the shielding approach from CDC’s perspective and guide thinking around implementation in the absence of empirical data. Considerations are based on current evidence known about the transmission and severity of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) and may need to be revised as more information becomes available. Please check the CDC website periodically for updates.
New Zealand on Wednesday said the defence force will now oversee the country’s quarantine facilities and strengthen border requirements, after a slip up allowed two people with coronavirus to move around the country.
New Zealand on Tuesday lost its COVID-free status when two women who had been given permission to leave quarantine early on compassionate grounds after arriving from Britain tested positive for the coronavirus.
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said she was appointing the Assistant Chief of Defence, Air Commodore Digby Webb, to oversee all quarantine and to manage isolation facilities, including the processes of exiting people from these facilities.
Ardern said Webb can seek access to military logistics, its operational expertise and, if needed, personnel, for running of the quarantine facilities.
During a press conference, Dr. Jacques Girard, who heads the Quebec City public health authority, drew attention to a case where patrons at a bar were ordered to wait until their COVID-19 tests came back, but disregarded the command and left the premises before the results came back positive.
This led to them being deemed “uncooperative” and forcibly interned in a quarantine facility.
“[W]e may isolate someone for 14 days,” Girard said during the press conference. “And it is what we did this morning…forced a person to cooperate with the investigation…and police cooperation was exceptional.”
Several legal advocacy groups on Monday filed a whistleblower complaint on behalf of a nurse at an Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) detention center documenting “jarring medical neglect” within the facility, including a refusal to test detainees for the novel coronavirus and an exorbitant rate of hysterectomies being performed on immigrant women.
The nurse, Dawn Wooten, was employed at the Irwin County Detention Center (ICDC) in Georgia, which is operated by LaSalle Corrections, a private prison company. The complaint was filed with the Office of the Inspector General (OIG) for the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) by advocacy groups Project South, Georgia Detention Watch, Georgia Latino Alliance for Human Rights, and South Georgia Immigrant Support Network.
Multiple women came forward to tell Project South about what they perceived to be the inordinate rate at which women in ICDC were subjected to hysterectomies – a surgical operation in which all or part of the uterus is removed. Additionally, many of the immigrant women who underwent the procedure were reportedly “confused” when asked to explain why they had the surgery, with one detainee likening their treatment to prisoners in concentration camps.