Expression of gratitude for the successful army deployment “CORONA 20” in the Canton of Basel-Stadt

28/05/2020 (11:00)
Press release

The deployment of the army to help the healthcare system in the Canton of Basel-Stadt cope with the coronavirus pandemic has come to an end. From today, the University Hospital of Basel will be in charge of supervising the coronavirus testing station in the Predigerkirche. The Government has officially dismissed the unit San Kp 5 and thanked them for their excellent support.

At times, up to as many as 70 army members had been deployed in the Canton of Basel-Stadt since 23 March 2020 to cope with the coronavirus pandemic. They initially supported the University Hospital of Basel with the set-up of the coronavirus testing centre in the Predigerkirche. Based on these positive experiences, capacity was increased to the point where the testing station was operated entirely by the army. The army was also responsible for mobile coronavirus swabbing in the hospital. Throughout the entire duration of the deployment, the army carried out over 13,000 tests and put in around 39,000 hours of work. The army therefore provided a service in an area that had become necessary as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. This duty would otherwise have fallen to the already more than overstretched staff in the emergency department.

This morning, delegations from the Government, the Cantonal Crisis Organisation [Kantonale Krisenorganisation], the University Hospital of Basel and the army expressed their gratitude for the army’s important work in tackling the coronavirus pandemic in the Canton of Basel-Stadt, at a small farewell ceremony.

Note: The ceremony was attended by the following, among others:

State Councillor Dr. Lukas Engelberger, Head of the Department of Health
State Councillor Baschi Dürr, Head of the Department of Justice and Security
Major Simona Dematté, Chief of Staff of the Cantonal Crisis Organisation
Prof. Dr. Roland Bingisser, Head of the Emergencies Department USB [University Hospital of Basel]
Divisional General Daniel Keller, Commanding Officer Ter Div [Territorial Division] 2
Colonel Bruno Trost, City Commander [Stadtkommandant] Basel