“It is important to remember that the general public should not use surgical or N95 masks if possible, as there is a global shortage of these masks and they’re best reserved for healthcare settings.
“However, please, if you’re outside cover your face and the instructions, coronavirus.gov.bm on how to make your own face cover,” said Mr Burt.
“As we all learn to navigate the world we didn’t anticipate and the things we have taken for granted are no longer immediately accessible, our levels of stress and anxiety, coupled with uncertainty has left many of us in need of additional support.
“We know that this pandemic has brought many new experiences and complications to many, and I share those concerns of the toll which this is taking on so many of our families.
“And this is not what the Government of Bermuda wanted to do at this time, but it is unfortunately necessary in our drive to save lives.”
If you need someone to talk to a new hotline has been created by dialing 543-1111, you will have access to a qualified, experienced mental health practitioner, to talk to, if you’re feeling anxious, sad, overwhelmed or stress,” he added.
“This line will be open starting tomorrow, from 9am to 9pm, seven days per week. This hotline is available in addition to our existing COVID-19 hotline where you can continue to get advice to your questions and general concerns.
“The difference is that this new hotline is about helping support our community’s emotional well-being, as we negotiate the day to day challenges of managing this pandemic.
“The government is grateful for the support of the third sector crisis response effort for coordinating the work and the Bermuda Psychological Association for stepping forward to manage this new hotline.
“We’re also thankful for the contributions of the Bermuda Hospitals Board’s, psychiatry department and operations team, the Mid Atlantic wellness psychology division, Bermuda Government public officers and Bermuda Health Council for making this a reality.
“I extend my sincere thanks in advance to the many health professionals who are helping to staff the emotional well-being hotline.”
The new emotional well-being hotline number which opened today from 9am to 9pm will be open seven days a week. The number to call is 543-1111.
For other general queries, you are welcome to call the traditional hotline at 444-2498.