Saturday 6 June, 2020

Vieux Fort residents rush pharmacies after curfew eases

Customers outside Total Health Care Pharmacy in Vieux-Fort

Customers outside Total Health Care Pharmacy in Vieux-Fort

The effect of the closure of pharmacies during the week-long 24-hour curfew on Saint Lucians in Vieux-Fort was quite evident on Tuesday, April 7, 2020.

The curfew had caused much pain for persons in need of medication, especially the elderly and most vulnerable.

While St Jude Hospital remained open throughout the curfew and was dispensing medicine, many residents were unaware due to lacking publicity on the matter.

On Tuesday, the scenes at the pharmacies in Vieux-Fort were grim, as individuals with various challenges were seen braving the scorching heat waiting for their turn to enter the pharmacies.

In a somber mood, some hobbled, while others limped on long queues to ensure they got their required medication.

At Massy Stores La Tourney in Vieux-Fort, where the line was extremely long, the queues snaked around the building.

Speaking with a few of the customers on the lines, they expressed disappointment with the government for closing nearby pharmacies during the 24-hour curfew, evidently completely unaware that St Jude had been an option for getting medication.

They also said the main reason they decided to endure the pain of waiting on long lines to get their medication was that they fear that the government may announce another shut down of the country without giving them enough notice to do their shopping.

“I was forced to come here today. I came to purchase medication for my grandmother which ran out a few days ago,” a young lady, who identified herself as Helen, told Loop News.

A man who spoke to Loop News on condition of anonymity fumed: “It was madness on the part of government to close the pharmacies during the curfew.”

Last week, in interviews with a number of residents of the south, they said because of the devastating effect of the coronavirus pandemic, compounded by the stringent measures taken by government to contain the spread of the virus, they were forced to go back to basics.

Some said they have already started using herbs to make medicines for various ailments and gradually changing their lifestyle to what it was in the past.

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