Thursday, August 18, 2022

Puerto Rico Government Updates Response to COVID-19

By on March 26, 2020

SAN JUAN – In the daily update provided by Puerto Rico’s government,  Public Affairs Secretary Osvaldo Soto García urged people Thursday to continue abiding by the executive order issued by Gov. Wanda Vázquez Garced to “preserve the health and safety of all” on the island.

“Today, the First Executive maintained communication with the people of Puerto Rico through a special program broadcast by WIPR. In this program she was accompanied by the general coordinator of the COVID-19 Task Force, Dr. Segundo Rodríguez Quilichini, as well as the rest of the doctors who were appointed to advise the government in this emergency,” said Soto García.

Dr. Rodríguez Quilichini maintained that “during the past few days we have been very vigilant towards the trend manifested by COVID-19 on the island. It is on this basis that our task force makes recommendations to the Governor of Puerto Rico. It is extremely important that these recommendations are observed, which seek to respond responsibly to this novel situation that affects us all.”

Today’s update, as published by the Vázquez administration, follows: 

Department of Public Safety

—Work is underway to purchase more safety equipment, such as face masks, gloves, hand sanitizers, and overalls for first responders.

—Working with the Health Department to attend to and monitor 25 officers from the Police Headquarters in Rincón, which was evacuated Wednesday as a preventive measure.

At 1pm-

396 arrests for violation of Executive Order-2020-023

623 charges of violation of EO-2020-023

Puerto Rico Police

—The Rincón station was closed preventively.

—The officers assigned to that station were isolated after the wife of an officer died of respiratory failure.

—The husband of the deceased lady will be tested.

—The station will be disinfected this week by a specialized company.

—Calls will be received at the Aguadilla Area Command and charges filed at the Aguada Station.

Bureau of Forensic Sciences (NCF by its Spanish initials)

NCF currently has about 75 spaces in the fridges.

Wagons were prepared with the necessary equipment to properly store corpses. At the moment, no wagon has bodies.

The corpse flow remains normal; likewise, the delivery process to funeral homes.

Between today and tomorrow it is expected to receive the results of the latest post-mortem tests.

All bodies continue to be observed under universal protection measures.

Bureau of Emergency Management and Disaster Administration

It continues to provide coordination and escort in the distribution of alcohol donated by the Serrallés Distillery. Today, alcohol was dispatched to 5 Municipalities, 3 State Government entities and 7 hospital entities.

The Bureau assumed control of all purchases of personal protection materials to consolidate distribution among all state agencies and municipal agencies.

Puerto Rico National Guard

At 6am today

35,514 passengers were medically evaluated and their temperatures taken

97 passengers received screening in the triage area

20 passengers received the C0VID-19 test, were oriented and sent home under the supervision of the Department of Health and a GP

62 passengers were sent to home isolation

0 passengers were sent to the hospital.

Port Authority

Between 6am and 2pm yesterday, 4 cargo ships and 1 tourist (private yacht) entered. 2 tankers came out. During the same period, 1 cargo ship and 1 tourism vessel remained in the bay.

Between 2pm and 10pm yesterday, 1 cargo ship and 1 tanker entered. 5 cargo ships left. During the same period, 1 cargo ship and 1 tour boat remained. The crew was unable to disembark during their stay in Puerto Rico.

Maritime Transport Authority

In coordination with the National Guard, 428 screening tests had been carried out on passengers (residents) transporting themselves between Ceiba and the municipality islands.

Family Department

Throughout the island, they are orienting and assisting the homeless population, providing information and prevention items in backpacks that they can carry. These backpacks have alcohol, hand sanitizer, toothbrush, cape, soap, “flash light” or other essential items. In addition, it includes an information sheet with the telephone number 787-999-6202 so that they can communicate in case of needing medical support or consultation during this coronavirus emergency (COVID19).

—56 contracts were formalized with entities to which the department delegates funds for the care of the homeless or at risk of being homeless, including 33 municipalities and 23 organizations. These funds are used for the operation of emergency shelters, community outreach, prevention, and quick relocation vouchers.

—364 participants from the Multiple Activity Centers for the Elderly (CAMPEA) now receive food at home. Food is prepared and delivered to the participants’ homes to avoid congregating them at the facilities.

—Over 1,000 follow-up phone calls have been made through the Licensing Officers and their Supervisors to find out the status of the facility. No incident related to this emergency has been reported.

They continually ensure that the Automated Distribution System for Alimony and Case Management known as PRACSES continues to operate normally so that the distribution of alimony will not be affected during the work suspension period.

Education Department (DE)

—According to data from the DE’s Office of Information System and Technological Support to Teaching (OSIATD), visits to the agency’s page exceed 1,125,000 visits since the announcement of the academic options. This represents massive support for the educational alternatives offered to school communities.

—The EduPR platform registers 250,000 downloaded lessons and more than 4,000 teachers and parents have been trained.

—The DE signed an agreement with the Health Department for 84 school nurses to support the checkpoints established by the National Guard at the airport.

Department of Economic Development and Commerce

—Yesterday a circular letter was issued authorizing textile manufacturers to operate, provided they modify their operations to produce products necessary for protection against Covid19.

Department of Treasury

—The Department of the Treasury works diligently on programming the systems and will shortly issue a publication with guidelines on the procedure and provisions for the incentive of $500 to self-employed workers.

—Any individual who has a merchant registration in force on the date of the Executive Order, March 15, qualifies for the incentive. It is estimated that about 170,000 people will benefit.

—The claim process will be through the Unified Internal Revenue System (SURI).

—Those who qualify will receive a notification through the SURI message system and also by email to initiate the claim process.

The Treasury plans to begin processing shipments next week.

Department of State

—The Secretary of the State, Elmer Román, instructed the Auxiliary Secretariat of Foreign Relations to manage status on:

—17 Puerto Ricans in Peru

—Puerto Ricans in Cusco

—family in Honduras

—Puerto Rican couple in Ecuador

—young people in Egypt

—case of a US resident citizen in Honduras

—status of cases worked on with the Resident Commissioner Office, Jenniffer González

—case of resident in the US, with family in Nicaragua

—Service was provided to 3 funeral homes related to Documents to be able to transfer 3 bodies to the Dominican Republic

Mental Health and Anti-Addiction Services Administration (ASSMCA) 

PAS Line:

Total calls: 1,546

Covid-19: 418

Chat: 204

** 67 people called in isolation for risk or testing positive.

LMM Airport interventions:

Triage area: 67

First responders: 92

—Today, 1,768 patients participating in follow-up services and telephone support were contacted.

Department of Labor

The Department of Labor and Human Resources is receiving claims for Unemployment Benefit Insurance. So far, its has received a total of 46,176 new unemployment claims since March 16, 2020.

March 16, 2020


March 17, 2020


March 18, 2020


March 19, 2020


March 20, 2020


March 21-24, 2020


Any worker who works for an employer who employs one or more people is eligible. Basic Weekly Benefits- Minimum $33.00 – Maximum $190.00 (Unemployment compensation benefits with temporary weekly income to eligible workers who are unemployed for reasons beyond their control).

Claim Process- All Unemployment Compensation claims can be filed through the Department of Labor and Human Resources Online Claim System. If you have any difficulty filing your claim, please call write an email to or call the phone line at 787-945-7900 from 7:30 am to 4:30 pm, Monday through Friday.

To make any type of complaint or present your health and safety concerns, you can contact the email

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