WHILE covid19 has affected staff at the Forensic Science Centre (FSC), there was no backlog of work, Minister of National Security Fitzgerald Hinds told Newsday on Thursday.
“I’m issuing a press release now, but I can tell you there is no backlog.
“We have been challenged with covid19. That is to say that staff members are affected, and once a staff member is affected, persons who would have been in direct contact with him or her are also up for trace and for separation and for testing.”
He said this has been an issue at the FSC.
“But more than that, the covid regulations require that when a body comes there for autopsy, it has first to be tested for covid19, and we have to wait for those results. When those results come we have to co-ordinate a time with the police investigator and the members of the family to witness the autopsy.
That required a little more than the usual time, Hinds said, and would have given rise to some of the “discussions” recently – claims about a backlog of autopsies to be done and lack of sufficient storage for the bodies .
“But I give you the assurance that on Monday we did autopsies, on Tuesday, on Wednesday, and we are doing some more today. Most of all, I give you the assurance that there is no backlog.
“We are coping with it and coping quite well, in these very trying, covid-stricken circumstances.”