~ Lots of Red tape to fly out COVID-19 patients. ~
MARIGOT: --- The American patient that was flown out to Miami on Thursday evening was not vacationing on St. Martin/ St. Maarten as reported by American media.
SMN News understands that the patient and his family and friends were on a yacht outside of St. Martin where he fell ill. According to well-placed sources, the patient was taken to the Louis Constant Fleming Hospital about three days ago where he was admitted and placed on a ventilator.
SMN News understands that the patient received proper medical care while being hospitalized on St. Martin and while the American media reported that the island does not have the appropriate medical infrastructure to handle the risks associated with COVID-19, the same can be said about hospitals in the USA where medical staff does not even have the proper Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for the COVID-19 prevention.
SMN News further understands that the wife of the patient was also tested on the French side when the results of the 62-year-old man came back positive for the COVID-19 and the woman was also tested positive and was housed at a hotel on the French side of the island.
According to information provided to SMN News, the patient and his family were on their personal yacht when he fell ill and was brought to LCF on Sunday. The source said that the patient wife is a medical doctor and when her husband complications were becoming severe LCF medical team made all efforts to send the patient to Guadeloupe for further medical treatment but his wife refused that option and said she would make contact with her medical insurance who made the necessary arrangements for him to be evacuated to the USA.
SMN News also understands that the medics on the private jet arrived as of 10 am on Thursday but French authorities had to cross lots of ‘red tape” before the patient was able to leave the island. The source said that Dutch Authorities in the Ministry of VSA made it almost impossible for the patient to cross the border and that the Prime Minister of St. Maarten and the Netherlands had to be contacted before the patient could finally leave shortly after 5 pm. “We were told by the Ministry of VSA said that COVID-19 patients cannot cross the border even if they were leaving for medical purposes on a private medivac jet.”
The source further explained that 15 days ago French authorities had to go through the same amount of “red tape” to fly out their first patient to Guadeloupe and while patients are now being flown out through L’ Esperance the one on Thursday had to go through the Dutch side because the medivac jet chose to land on the Dutch side.