Health Ministry no longer issuing Covid discharge certificates for persons in home isolation

Minister of Health Dr Frank Anthony

As of today, the Ministry of Health will no longer be issuing discharge certificates to persons who have been in home isolation after contracting the novel coronavirus.

This was revealed by Minister of Health Dr Frank Anthony during his daily update on the situation in the country.

With over 12,000 people currently infected with the life-threatening illness, Dr Anthony said the Ministry will be unable to issue documents.

“When we had two or three persons coming for that discharge certificate, we could go back, look into the results, check and be able to give that certificate. With thousands of persons who have gotten infected…it is extremely difficult to verify the records to be able to issue discharge certificates for everyone,” the Minister explained.

Dr. Anthony said that the document does not provide safety for persons to return to work. He said once persons have isolated and are asymptomatic after the isolation period, they could return to work.

“Once you have completed your home isolation, you can go back to work. There’s no need for you to take a discharge certificate,” Dr Anthony said.

Further, Minister Anthony highlighted that public sector agencies should not require employees to produce clearance certificates to return to work. The Minister said that should private sector entities continue to require the document; other measures will have to be implemented by these agencies to accommodate that.

“The private sector…who require such a discharge certificate, maybe those workplaces can make alternative arrangements for their employees to get such a certificate, but we would not be issuing discharge certificates for persons who are in home isolation,” he asserted.

He said however, that individuals who have been hospitalised with COVID-19 will be issued a document upon their release.

“The persons who the Ministry will issue discharge certificates for are those persons who have been hospitalised. So, if you are in any one of our regional hospitals or the Ocean View hospital, then we will issue you, upon discharge, with that discharge certificate,” the minister explained.

This cessation also comes after large crowds were seen standing in line to receive clearance certificates as the common belief was that it must be produced in order to return to work.

There are currently 12,391 active Covid-19 cases across the country. [Extracted and Modified from DPI]