"The people of Latvia are thankful to the medics in Latvia and all over the world for their selfless service during the COVID-19 pandemic and have put up a monument by a famous Latvian artist to health care personnel, supported by donations of almost 20 local companies," said a release from the organizers of the initiative.
The six-meter-high sculpture "Medics to the World" shows a female medic who has just come out of the treatment room and is getting ready for her next shift.
"The three-month long lockdown period and fear for their lives has made the people change their perspective towards doctors, nurses and other medical staff. Many just now for the first time in their lives realized the vital importance of medical staff," says the artist and author of the idea, professor at the Art Academy of Latvia Aigars Bikše, is one of the most prominent sculptors in Latvia today.
With its “Test, Track, Isolate” mantra Latvia has had more success than most countries in containing the COVID-19 virus with fewer than 30 fatalities from a population of just under 2 million.
"The main heroes of the pandemic are the medical staff who risked their lives for us in order to preserve the health of the humanity. The wellbeing of the society requires concerted and responsible action. It means that everyone follows expert advice – maintaining social distance, washing hands, and while medical staff take care of the infected. I am pleased that the Latvian people are aware of this responsibility and I am pleased to see that the people have appreciated our work," said the president of Latvian Nurses Association Dita Raiska at the unveiling ceremony.