Coronavirus (COVID-19)

CARPHA Situation Reports

CARPHA has upgraded the risk of transmission of COVID-19 to the Caribbean Region to Very High. The revised risk level is based on international risk assessment guidelines, particularly in keeping with risk assessment for MERS-COV and pandemic influenza. CARPHA Member States (CMS) are strongly urged to increase their surveillance mechanisms and to be ready to implement their national pandemic preparedness plans, which have been modified to address COVID-19.

 

WHO Resources

 

Other Resources

 
CTO on Coronavirus

COVID-19 Forces Postponement of CTO’s 10th Tourism Human Resources Conference

BRIDGETOWN, Barbados (Date) – The Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) advises of the postponement of the 10th Tourism Resources Conference, which was scheduled to take place in May. The new date for the event, being organised in collaboration with the Nevis ministry of tourism, is 25-27 November 2020.

“In light of the constantly changing nature of the coronavirus crisis and in the wake of the decision by the World Health Organization to declare COVID-19 a pandemic, the CTO and the government of Nevis have decided that postponing the conference is the best course of action,” said Sharon Banfield, the CTO’s director of resource mobilisation and development.

The CTO will continue to diligently monitor the situation and pay close attention to guidance from regional public health officials.

For more information on what the CTO and member countries are doing to limit the spread of coronavirus in the region, visit www.onecaribbean.org. And for the regional health response, visit www.carpha.org.

CTO Statement on Coronavirus (COVID-19)

BRIDGETOWN, Barbados (12 March 2020) – The Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) continues to closely monitor the coronavirus virus (COVID-19) situation. We continue to engage our member countries, as well as the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) and our tourism partners, to inform travel-related health measures that are proportionate to the public health threat and based on local risk assessment.

While there continues to be a limited number of imported coronavirus cases and no cases of local transmission in the region, the health authorities across our membership are taking the necessary steps to limit the number of new cases and to curb the possible spread among our populations from the confirmed imported cases.

The CTO would like to emphasise that the World Health Organization (WHO) has not called for any travel and trade restrictions as a result of the coronavirus. As a matter of fact, the WHO continues to advise against such restrictions. Local populations and visitors alike are assured that the Caribbean remains open for business.

Consequently, we advise travellers to follow the health and travel advisories issued by the authorities and to take appropriate precautions.

  • Closely monitor www.carpha.org and www.onecaribbean.org for important information and updates
  • Avoid contact with sick people.
  • Avoid travelling if sick.
  • Wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Use an alcohol-based hand sanitiser if soap and water are not available.
  • Follow local authority instructions
  • Cover your nose and mouth with a flexed elbow or paper tissue when coughing or sneezing and disposing immediately of the tissue and performing hand hygiene
  • Refrain from touching mouth and nose.
  • Follow proper food hygiene practices

In addition, before you travel, please check whether any travel restrictions have been issued by your intended destination.  You should also consider investing in  comprehensive travel insurance.

CTO Brings Together Tourism Leaders and Agencies on the Frontline of Battle to Confront Coronavirus

BRIDGETOWN, Barbados (5 March 2020) – The Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) has brought together tourism leaders and a key agency on the frontline of battle to confront coronavirus (COVID-19).

The CTO yesterday organised an information session for member governments, facilitated by the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA).

During the session, CARPHA assured ministers and directors of tourism and other senior tourism officials, that while there have been no cases of local transmission – the two cases reported in St. Martin and one in the Dominican Republic were all imported – it was working closely with member countries and Caribbean coordinating partners such as the CTO on mechanisms to prevent further transmission from any possible imported cases.

Yesterday’s session was part of the CTO’s programme of full engagement in the regional response to the COVID-19 outbreak, in collaboration with CARPHA, the Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency, the Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association and the Global Tourism Resilience Centre.

The CTO’s web site, www.onecaribbean.org provides updated information from member countries and links to the CARPHA site (www.carpha.org)  which is monitoring the virus and providing regular, reliable updates.

The organisation is also utilising a range of sources to track the global and reported regional impact of the virus, which has affected 93,090 people in 76 countries (80,422 in China alone), according to the latest World Health Organization figures.

In the meantime, travellers are advised to:

  • Closely monitor www.carpha.org and www.onecaribbean.org  for important information and updates
  • Avoid contact with sick people.
  • Avoid travelling if sick.
  • Wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Use an alcohol-based hand sanitiser if soap and water are not available.
  • Follow local authority instructions
  • Stay informed about the virus situation in any country to which you are travelling

Caribbean Tourism and Health Stakeholders Forge Alliance to Safeguard Visitors and Residents from COVID-19

MIAMI (March 5, 2020) – The leaders of the Caribbean tourism and health sectors, who are working together to prevent the spread of the COVID-19 virus throughout the region, are implementing readiness and response measures to prevent and contain the virus.
While there has been no local spread of the virus in the Caribbean, community transmission is now reported in many other countries than China, some of which have nonstop flights to Caribbean States.

Therefore, due to the current increased risk of importation of COVID-19 to the region, the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) has upgraded the risk of Coronavirus disease transmission from “low” to “moderate to high”.

In light of this, CARPHA Executive Director Dr. Joy St. John is urging health authorities of CARPHA Member States to shift their mindset from preparedness to readiness and rapid response and continue to do all that is necessary to strengthen their capacity to respond to possible importation of cases.

The recently established COVID-19 Caribbean Tourism Task Force comprises representatives from CARPHA, the Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association (CHTA), the Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO), and the Global Tourism Resilience & Crisis Management Centre (GTRCMC).

In a statement issued by the leaders of the task force member organizations, they indicated that a Memorandum of Understanding has been agreed upon by the organizations to foster closer collaboration.

“Recognizing the essential need to safeguard the health and safety of residents and visitors to mitigate the impact of the COVID-19 threat to the Caribbean; and further recognizing the importance of building upon the collaborative efforts which are already underway, and the need to pool organizational resources to do so; we have agreed to formalize our efforts and messaging through the establishment of the COVID-19 Caribbean Tourism Task Force (CCTTF),” the MOU reads.

The organizations acknowledged concerns about the high level of misunderstanding about the virus which has elevated the panic at the global level and resulted in the dissemination of a high level of misinformation.

The CCTTF will focus on raising awareness and sharing accurate information; strengthening monitoring at airports, seaports, and hotels and accommodations; improving coordination among stakeholder organizations and locally between tourism and health officials; sharing best practices; training, education and capacity building; and conducting tourism impact research.

“Tourism is the lifeblood of the Caribbean so we’ve come together as organizations already engaged in readiness programs to pool resources so we can ensure the people of our region, and our visitors, remain safe from this viral threat,” read the task force’s statement, which adds “our ability to quickly contain any outbreak will be determined by how efficiently we can pool information and capacities – this agreement allows us to plan for an emergency and move our resources rapidly.”

Dr. Lisa Indar, CARPHA’s Assistant Director for the Surveillance, Disease Prevention & Control Division, explained that the organizations already collaborate, but in view of the spread of the virus in other regions, CARPHA and other task force organizations wanted to proactively solidify cooperation and ensure the task force had what it needed to keep COVID-19 from threatening the health of residents and visitors and the economies of the Caribbean.

The establishment of the Caribbean COVID-19 Tourism Task Force follows a Special Emergency Meeting of the CARICOM Heads of Government with health and tourism officials and cruise associations in Barbados last weekend, where they agreed to set up a regional protocol with the cruise industry.

As an immediate proactive measure to help fight the importation and spread of this novel viral illness, the CCTTF is urging hotel and tourism accommodation providers to register for CARPHA’s Tourism Health Information System (THiS), which was developed several years ago to provide support information, and to help identify and confidentially manage early warning symptoms by employees and guests in a rapid manner.

Since January, over 50 additional hotels have joined THiS. To register, visit http://this.carpha.org or https://tinyurl.com/txjo7al. Visitors are also encouraged to self-report at http://this.carpha.org, and click on the self-reporting tab to the bottom left of the screen.

CARPHA advises residents and visitors that the best preventative measures are individual ones they can take by exercising hand hygiene, respiratory etiquette, social distancing (staying one meter away from persons with flu) as well as avoiding eating raw and undercooked meats.

UNWTO Impact assessment of the COVID-19 outbreak on international tourism

Read UNWTO’s Impact assessment of the COVID-19 outbreak on international tourism.

Anguilla on Coronavirus

2nd April 2020: COVID-19 Update – 1 new confirmed case; Six Negative and One Pending

Today, April 2nd at 9:53am we received notification from the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA), that 1 of the seven samples sent on Monday, March 30th tested positive for the COVID-19 virus. The other 6 samples were negative for Covid-19.

The positive case is an imported case, a 78-year old male resident with a history of travel to a United States overseas territory within the incubation period. He presented with mild symptoms and remains isolated per the established protocol. All close contacts have been placed under quarantine and observed for the development of symptoms.

To date, Anguilla has confirmed three cases of the COVID-19 virus. The Ministry of Health is currently awaiting 1 pending result from a sample sent on Wednesday 1st April. The Government of Anguilla has been preparing for the arrival of COVID-19 since late January. We urge residents not to panic and instead be guided by the helpful practices that you can do prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Members of the general public are once again urged to follow proper hygiene, respiratory etiquette, and comply with the social distancing measures in order to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

The Ministry will continue to provide timely and accurate information as the situation continues to evolve. Persons with any questions, including those with concerns that they may have been exposed to COVID-19, should call the Ministry’s hotlines at 476-7627, that is 476 SOAP or 584-4263, that is 584-HAND.

The Ministry of Health will continue to provide timely updates through our media partners, our official Facebook page or at www.beatcovid19.ai.

 

Today, March 26th at 1:04 pm we received notification from the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA), that two of the four samples sent on Monday, March 23rd have tested positive for the COVID-19 virus and two have tested negative. The first positive case is an imported case – a 27-year old female visitor from the US, who arrived in Anguilla on March 11th. The second positive case, a 47- year old male resident, is a close contact of the first case. This is also an indication of local transmission. In accordance with public health practices for containment and prevention of spread:

 The individuals, who both presented with mild symptoms, were placed in isolation upon suspicion and they remain in isolation at this time.   the Ministry of Health and Health Authority colleagues have initiated aggressive contact tracing to identify every individual who may have come into close contact with this patient. All individuals thus identified will placed under quarantine and tested.

Furthermore, additional social distancing measures for the general public as outlined in the Plan for Escalation of Measures for COVID-19 will be announced shortly.

The Government of Anguilla has been preparing for the arrival of COVID-19 since late January. We urge residents not to panic and instead be guided by the helpful practices that you can do prevent the spread of COVID-19. To date, out of a total of nine suspected cases of COVID-19, five have tested negative, two have tested positive and two are pending.

Members of the general public are once again urged to follow proper hygiene, respiratory etiquette, and comply with the social distancing guidance in order to prevent the spread of COVID-19.   The Ministry of Health and the Government of Anguilla maintain that the health and safety of the nation continue to be the utmost priority.

The Ministry will continue to provide timely and accurate information as the situation continues to evolve. Persons with any questions or concerns that they may have been exposed to COVID-19 should call the Ministry’s hotlines at 476-7627, that is 476 SOAP or 584-4263, that is 584-HAND.

The Ministry of Health will continue to provide timely updates through our media partners, our official Facebook page or at www.beatcovid.ai.

Anguilla’s Ministry of Health Launches New Information Platform for COVID-19

The Valley, Anguilla, March 25, 2020…… Anguilla’s Ministry of Health & Social Development has launched a new platform — www.beatcovid19.ai — which will serve as a central space for all Official News and Updates related to COVID-19.  The latest news and information from the Ministry of Health, the Ministry of Education, the Ministry of Tourism, the Air & Sea Ports Authority (AASPA) and the Anguilla Tourist Board (ATB) are all available on this site.

Comprehensive information on the facts about the Coronavirus, the status of the disease globally as well as in Anguilla (where no confirmed case has yet been reported), along with tips and resources outlining simple preventive measures that everyone can take to guard against the virus, are all presented in a clear, concise and easily accessible format.  The two emergency hotlines — (264)476-SOAP (7627) and (264) 584-HAND (4263) – that have been set up are also listed.

The updates on the Website extend beyond health-related concerns.  There is functionality for persons to input their Employment Status, a feature that provides the Government of Anguilla with key data on the impact of COVID-19 on the labour force and their needs.

The site also features updates from Education, on the status of all learning institutions; Tourism, on travel in and out of Anguilla; the Financial Institutions, on the latest financial relief measures;  and other key stakeholders that serve large segments of the population.

The Ministry of Health & Social Development worked with the Thoughtful Digital Agency on the development and launch of this platform.

For the most recent guidelines, updates and information please visit www.beatcovid19.ai

Contact:

Chantelle Richardson / Coordinator, International Markets / Anguilla Tourist Board / The Valley, Anguilla, BWI / E: [email protected]atb.ai

Alison Ross
Senior Vice President / The Portfolio Marketing Group
301 East 57th Street, Floor 3 , Manhattan, NY 10022

 

Anguilla Introduces New Preventive Measures to Safeguard Local Resident and Visitor Populations

H.E. The Governor and The Hon. Premier issued a Joint Statement regarding Covid-19, emphasizing the Government’s unwavering commitment to protect the safety and well-being of all residents.

There have been no cases of the COVID-19 (Novel Corona virus) in Anguilla to date.  However, in light of the most recent global developments, the following additional and new preventive measures at the ports of entry were approved at a special meeting of the Executive Council to guard against the threat of an imported case.
•           The closure of all Anguilla’s ports – sea and air – for 14 days for all passenger movements. This will come in to force from 11:59 pm on Friday 20th March (Anguilla time). This does not include the movement of goods.
•           All persons arriving in Anguilla who have traveled outside of the Caribbean Region within the last 14 days, will be quarantined for 14 days on their arrival. A judgement will be made on arrival by health professionals if this can be self-quarantine or in a government run health facility.
•           All non-essential travel for public servants has been suspended for 30 days. In addition, residents of Anguilla are encouraged to avoid all unnecessary travel overseas at this time.
•           Schools, which are already closed this week, will remain closed until and including Friday, April 3rd,  2020.
•           Persons are encouraged not to congregate, this includes in church, at sports leagues, political meetings, youth gatherings, and at any sporting activities.
•           Anguilla has an isolation area at the hospital to deal with suspected cases and additional infrastructural improvements are being finalized this week.  Plans are underway for a small isolation unit in the medium to longer term.
•           A 24-hour emergency hotline has been established for the general public seeking information on COVID-19 and for persons who feel they have been exposed to COVID-19. The number is 1-264-476-7627 or 1-264-476 SOAP.

Anguilla’s Ministry of Health is conducting an aggressive and expanded national campaign on respiratory hygiene as the main preventive/containment with a strategic focus on the tourism sector and children in addition to the general public, utilizing radio, jingles and PSA’s and social media.

The Ministry emphasizes that regardless of the evolution of the current situation the following basic principles reduce the risk of transmission of several respiratory infections including coronavirus:
•           Frequent handwashing, especially after contact with ill persons and their environments.
•           Covering of coughs and sneezes with disposable tissues or in the crook of a flexed elbow.
•           Avoiding contact with persons suffering from or exhibiting symptoms of acute respiratory infections such as the flu, coughs, and colds.
•           Ensuring that shared spaces and work surfaces are cleaned and disinfected frequently.
•           Limiting physical contact with others, including no handshakes or physical greeting, and to avoid crowds.

For more general information and updates please visit the official websites of the Center for Disease Control (CDC), World Health Organisation (WHO) and CARPHA:
· https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html
· https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019
· http://carpha.org/What-We-Do/Public-Health/Novel-Coronavirus
For information specific to Anguilla please visit the Ministry of Health’s Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/SocialDevelopmentAnguilla/.
About Anguilla

Tucked away in the northern Caribbean, Anguilla is a shy beauty with a warm smile. A slender length of coral and limestone fringed with green, the island is ringed with 33 beaches, considered by savvy travelers and top travel magazines, to be the most beautiful in the world. A fantastic culinary scene, a wide variety of quality accommodations at varying price points, a host of attractions and exciting calendar of festivals make Anguilla an alluring and entrancing destination.

Anguilla lies just off the beaten path, so it has retained a charming character and appeal. Yet because it can be conveniently reached from two major gateways: Puerto Rico and St. Martin, and by private air, it’s a hop and a skip away.

Romance? Barefoot elegance? Unfussy chic? And untrammeled bliss?   Anguilla is Beyond Extraordinar

Contact: Jameel Rochester / Manager, Corporate Affairs (Ag.) /Anguilla Tourist Board

The Valley, Anguilla, BWI /E: [email protected]

Antigua and Barbuda on Coronavirus

State of Emergency: 24-hr Curfew Guidelines

As part of measures to reduce the spread of COVID-19 in the twin-island state, the Government of Antigua & Barbuda has imposed a 24-hour curfew. The mandatory seven-day curfew starts from 12:01am on Thursday, April 2nd (immediately after midnight on Wednesday) until April 9th.

Please read the full advisory here

Antigua and Barbuda Shares Encouraging “Messages in the Sand” Amid Coronavirus Pandemic

St John’s, Antigua (March 31, 2020) – Antigua and Barbuda is spreading words of encouragement and kindness around the world, by writing messages in the sand, aimed at uplifting persons around the world during the coronavirus pandemic.

The inspiring messages will be written on some of Antigua and Barbuda’s beautiful 365 sandy beaches.  Launched by the Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority, the ‘Messages in the Sand’ imagery aims to bring a slice of Antigua and Barbuda’s tranquility to everyone’s home.

The first message in the sand, “Stay Safe” was written on the shore of Antigua’s breath-taking Fort James beach on Monday 30 March and revealed on Tuesday 31 March.  Messages will appear across social media, weekly on Mondays.

People can get involved by sending suggestions for messages to be written in the sand, to the Tourism Authority’s social media platforms. To do so, visit the Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority’s social media pages on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.  Reply to the ‘Messages in the Sand’ post with your suggestion for a ‘Message in the Sand’, sending motivational affirmations to loved ones, and strangers.

View the first ‘Message in the Sand’ here:   Facebook: AntiguaBarbuda;  Twitter: @antiguabarbuda; Instagram: @antiguaandbarbuda.

 

Antigua and Barbuda Minister of Tourism Holds Virtual Tourism Industry Briefing to Discuss Cornonavirus

ST. JOHN’S, ANTIGUA (March 26 2020) – Antigua and Barbuda’s Minister of Tourism, The Honourable Charles Fernandez, on Tuesday hosted a virtual industry briefing where he addressed a wide cross-section of tourism industry stakeholders on the latest effects the coronavirus (covid-19) was having on tourism in Antigua and Barbuda.

In support of the recent health protocols, an online method of communication was used, to update all industry partners collectively. With the impact of covid-19, top of mind amongst stakeholders, over 200 participants from the hospitality and tourism sector joined the online meeting, for addresses by the Tourism Minister, and CEO of the Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority(ABTA), Colin C. James.

The Tourism Minister spoke about the Government’s response to the crisis and expressed concern about the rapid impact that the coronavirus was having on the industry and Antigua and Barbuda’s economy. He ensured stakeholders that it was the priority of the Ministry of Tourism and the Tourism Authority to remain in constant communication with all tourism partners and stakeholders both local and international, throughout the crisis.

“The next phase is to be prepared with our plans which will be critical for our recovery once this is all over, said the Tourism Minister.

CEO of the Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority, Colin C. James shared with the participants highlights of the destination’s three-pronged response to managing the covid-19 crisis, throughout its various cycles and marketing plans for the recovery. He noted, that in light of the global effects of covid-19 on world economies, this response would now take precedence over the Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority’s originally proposed 2020 summer marketing plan.
The industry briefing also featured updates from stakeholders throughout the sector, to include Executive Director of the Antigua and Barbuda Hotels and Tourism Association Patrice Simon, Restauranteur Alex Grimley of the Rocks Group of Restaurants (Sheer Rocks and Catherine’s Cafe), Parks Commissioner at the National Parks Authority Ann-Marie Martin and Geo W. Bennett Bryson’s Shipping and Tropical Adventures Managing Director Patrick Ryan, who joined the session as online panellists.

A question and answer segment allowed participants to pose questions online, to the Tourism Minister, the CEO of the Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority, as well as to panelists online.
For media enquiries, please contact:

Maria Blackman
Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority
T: 1 (268) 562 7600/464-7601
E: [email protected]

 

A personal message from Colin C. James, CEO of the Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority about some of the precautions put in place by the Government of Antigua and Barbuda to protect, residents and visitors in our beautiful twin-island state from covid-19 / coronavirus. 

Dear Visitors:

Hello, I am Colin James, CEO of the Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority and I’ld like to take this time to let you know what Antigua and Barbuda is doing to address the coronavirus crisis.

First and most importantly, the safety and health of our citizens and visitors like you are of great importance to us. We’ve collaborated with the Ministry of Health, all the relevant Government departments, and tourism partners to ensure that the necessary precautionary measures are in place to detect and prevent the spread of the virus in our beautiful islands.

Travel advisories were put into effect and health protocols on-island activated to protect the health and safety of our  twin-island nation, its people and our visitors. 

So, while we’re still welcoming visitors, we understand that during these uncertain times, many have been advised and opted not to travel  as Governments around the world tackle the issue of controlling the spread of covid-19.

So if your travel plans to visit are affected, we encourage you to contact your travel adviser, hotel or airline representative to reschedule your trip for a future date when we will all be ready for that much needed getaway.

For current updates  on travel to Antigua and Barbuda go to  www.visitantiguabarbuda.com

Have a look at  our F.A.Q. page which has lots of information that will help answer some of your questions and concerns. 

We are continuously monitoring the situation and we will keep you updated.  We want you to have the utmost confidence that the two most beautiful islands in the world, Antigua and Barbuda, with our warm friendly people, will still be here and ready to welcome you as soon as you are ready to travel again.  So until then stay safe and God Bless.

 

Antigua and Barbuda update on Coronavirus/COVID-19

ST.JOHN’S, ANTIGUA (March 16, 2020) –  The Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority continues to keep abreast of the latest developments related to the Coronavirus/COVID-19 and would like to assure travellers that precautionary measures are being implemented to guard against further spread of the virus within the destination.

Antigua and Barbuda has one confirmed case of Coronavirus.  The individual is currently in self-isolation at home in Antigua and is being monitored. All identifiable contacts that this person has had, are being investigated.

Antigua and Barbuda remains open for travellers. However, foreign nationals (including passengers and crew) who have travelled to China, Italy, Iran, Japan, Korea and Singapore the past twenty-eight (28) days, will be not be permitted entry into Antigua and Barbuda. Citizens of Antigua and Barbuda as well as resident diplomats will be allowed entry.

Several precautionary measures have also been put in place including educational campaigns at hotels, with a focus on identifiable prevention, preparation and identification tips. The general public and travellers are reminded to take general measures against becoming ill, which includes regular hand-washing, good cough and sneeze etiquette, social distancing and avoidance of sick persons.

The national multi-sectoral COVID-19 task force established by the Government of Antigua and Barbuda continues to meet regularly, to assess all international and regional developments related to COVID-19.

For more information and updates on COVID-19 and the Government of Antigua and Barbuda’s response go to: www.ab.gov.ag .

ABOUT ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA 

Antigua (pronounced An-tee’ga) and Barbuda (Bar-byew’da) is located in the heart of the Caribbean Sea. Voted the World Travel Awards  Caribbean’s Most Romantic Destination, the twin-island paradise offers visitors two uniquely distinct experiences, ideal temperatures year-round, a rich history, vibrant culture, exhilarating excursions, award-winning resorts, mouth-watering cuisine and 365 stunning pink and white-sand beaches – one for every day of the year.

The largest of the Leeward Islands, Antigua comprises 108-square miles with rich history and spectacular topography that provides a variety of popular sightseeing opportunities. Nelson’s Dockyard, the only remaining example of a Georgian fort a listed UNESCO World Heritage site, is perhaps the most renowned landmark. Antigua’s tourism events calendar includes the prestigious Antigua Sailing Week, Antigua Classic Yacht Regatta, and the annual Antigua Carnival; known as the Caribbean’s Greatest Summer Festival. Barbuda, Antigua’s smaller sister island, is the ultimate celebrity hideaway.

The island lies 27 miles north-east of Antigua and is just a 15-minute plane ride away. Barbuda is known for its untouched 17 mile stretch of pink sand beach and as the home of the largest Frigate Bird Sanctuary in the Western Hemisphere.  Find information on Antigua & Barbuda at: www.visitantiguabarbuda.com and follow us on Twitter. http://twitter.com/antiguabarbuda  Facebook www.facebook.com/antiguabarbuda; Instagram: www.instagram.com/AntiguaandBarbuda

For media enquiries, please contact: Maria Blackman / Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority / T: 1 (268) 562 7600/464-7601 / E: [email protected]

Barbados on Coronavirus

April 2, 2020
Barbados has announced a 24-hour curfew. As of 5 pm tomorrow (Friday) all supermarkets and minimarts shall remain closed until further notice and people can only be on the road if they are seeking  medical attention or going to the pharmacy, or if they are part of the essential services.

Please click on the following link for the full statement from the acting prime minister, Santia Bradshaw. https://bit.ly/2R8IFGF.

Barbados Moves to Stage 3, Announces New Measures 

On Thursday, Prime Minister of Barbados, the Hon. Mia Amor Mottley, announced that the country has now recorded 24 cases of COVID-19. As a result, the Government has activated Stage 3 of the National COVID-19 Preparedness Plan.

In Stage 3, only essential services will operate, and movement of non-essential personnel will be restricted between 8 p.m. and 6 a.m. daily, from Saturday, March 28 until Tuesday, April 14. Regular movement will resume on Wednesday, April 15 unless otherwise stated. Prime Minister Mottley also urged Barbadians to minimize their movements during the day.

The 24 patients who tested positive for the virus are currently receiving care in isolation, and are showing mild symptoms. The Ministry of Health and Wellness continues its contact tracing efforts to ensure the containment and proper treatment of COVID-19.

More updates will be shared as they come.

The Government of Barbados has advised that at this time there are no restrictions on travel to Barbados as a result of COVID-19. In a release, the Ministry of Health and Wellness confirmed that their measures of screening and testing are underway and “no-one has tested positive for the respiratory illness so far.”

With no known cases, we continue to welcome and embrace visitors to our shores, however the protocols established by the Ministry of Health and Wellness to contain any potential spread of the virus, remain in effect.

They are:

  • Surveillance measures including utilisation of advance passenger information, immigration screening, and Port Health monitoring. All current and proposed actions are based on level of risk determined by Public Health Authorities.
  • All persons coming to Barbados with a history of having travelled to countries with widespread local transmission are quarantined for a period of fourteen (14) days after last exposure.
  • Barbados has a programme for both quarantine and isolation based on the level of risk determined by Public Health Authorities. Both units are guided by standard operation procedures and protocols. Barbados is able to accommodate both high and low risk travellers.
  • The mandatory quarantine facility is to be used for high risk persons without symptoms.
  • Any person with potential exposure who develops symptoms consistent with coronavirus will be admitted to the National Isolation Facility for testing and further management.
  • Visited countries identified for quarantine are: China, South Korea, Iran and Italy.

The Ministry of Health and Wellness has also announced a 24-hour hotline to respond to public queries about the coronavirus. The telephone number is 536-4500.

More updates on Barbados’ response to COVID-19 can be found at https://gisbarbados.gov.bb.

Belize on Coronavirus

Prime Minister Rt. Hon. Dean Barrow Announces Closure of Borders to Nationals

My Fellow Belizeans,

Earlier today, the Ministry of Health’s leadership team publicly announced the worrying news of test results having this morning   confirmed Belize’s fourth case of COVID-19.

The infected person is from the Cayo District, but up until about 11 days ago, had been traveling to and from Belize City where he worked. He is in isolation at the Western Regional Hospital and the DHS and his team have already commenced their mapping and tracing exercise. Indeed, swabbing of contacts as a prelude to testing has already started; and the exercise includes coverage of the medical professionals involved in the treatment of the patient.

In view of all this, my message today is for a two-fold purpose.

It is clear now that the State of Emergency declaration and the shuttering of the country came not a moment too soon. Still, there are people insisting that we are overreacting in promoting some of the draconian measures contained in the revised statutory instrument signed last night by His Excellency the Governor General. I hope that this fourth case will help to persuade them of the absolute gravity of the situation.

Accordingly, I also appeal to everyone not to try to beat the system. Stop trying — and here I pitch my petition to business owners and individuals — stop trying to find workarounds or opt-outs of the restrictions that force you to close and that limit your activities. I repeat that your movements must only be purpose-driven, confined to the reasons clearly listed in the Emergency Regulations.

Travel across district lines is curtailed, and Easter is cancelled except, of course, as an opportunity for prayer, reflection, and virtual attendance at the religious services that our churches will live stream.

You all know that our first two cases, one of which led to the infection of a third person, were imported. This fourth one seemingly was not. It, therefore, makes crystal clear the urgency of the heightened vigilance and protective measures that the State of Emergency is designed to achieve. And there is yet more to be done. In the result, I will now, after a word of explanation, announce an additional ramp-up to our Emergency Regulations.

Some days ago, we notified of our decision to place all Belizeans entering or re-entering Belize, under a mandatory 14-day quarantine. Since that time around 19 Belizeans are now confined in Corozal Town at two facilities. Yet, they keep on coming. This is a stark reminder that our first two cases were brought in from L.A. and New York. The situation of Belizeans that have been in the U.S. and Mexico simply returning to the country willy nilly, cannot be allowed to continue. It leaves the door wide open to importation of the virus and this can upend all our war efforts against COVID-19.

As a consequence, and after obtaining the unanimous support of the National Oversight Committee, the Government of Belize has decided that our borders are now to be closed even to Belizeans seeking to enter the country. Except in the case of those that are returning from travel for urgent medical attention or some other emergency purpose, no Belizean currently abroad can return to Belize. This prohibition will, in the first instance, last for the duration of the State of Emergency; and it will begin at 12:01 a.m. on Sunday, April 5th.

It is, I readily admit, an extreme move. There is, however, no doubt that it has become necessary as we do everything to head off the swamping of our health system and the serious loss of life that the proliferation of the virus would entail. I, therefore, ask all Belizeans, and particularly those in the diaspora, for their understanding. This is the fight of our lives and I deliberately use the metaphor when I say that Belize must absolutely be placed on a war footing.

Our new decision is, as we have checked and double-checked, entirely legal and grounded in the powers contained in the Constitution of the country and under the Governor General’s Emergency Proclamation. We shall therefore proceed and for the next 30 days our position is irreversible. That, however, is not all.

The circumstances of the Cayo case make clear that the danger of extensive human-to-human transmission is now upon us. I, therefore, reserve the right to come back to you next week to announce even more stringent shutdown directives.

Some businesses that escaped first round closure might find themselves included in a second round. Naturally, this would only happen after the National Oversight Committee meeting on Monday and consultation with Cabinet.

I close by sharing some good news on the economic front. The application forms for those that have lost their jobs and are to be provided GOB relief are now available. In fact, there has already been a first rush of applications. The verification process is underway, and people should be seeing their money in the banks within two or so business days.

Finally, OFID has confirmed its agreement to the reprogramming of 10 million Belize dollars from the infrastructure component of the Southside Poverty Alleviation Project. That money will now be used to augment our cash to the people program. Additionally, OFID is fast tracking approval for a new Belize loan in the amount of 20 million dollars. When all of this is placed in the pool of funds to come from the World Bank and the IDB, we are well on our way in the effort to leave no one behind in the exercise to cover comprehensively our unemployed and those struggling to feed themselves and their families.

As always, then, together we do our best and together we shall prevail.

Venceremos,

And God bless Belize.

 

The prime minister, Dean Barrow, has announced a national state of emergency for the entire country of Belize. The prime minister’s statement can be downloaded from  the following link.

https://www.dropbox.com/s/dafx22m1y4lfx7j/Pm%20Adress%20March%2030%202020.mp4?dl=0

Belize ministry of health confirms third case of COVID-19

26 March – The Ministry of Health has completed a further screening of laboratory tests for COVID-19 and nine additional tests were done today, March 29th, on samples from across the country. Through that screening process, a third confirmed case of COVID-19 has been identified.

The case is that of a 38-year-old Belizean male with travel history to New York. He arrived in Belize on March 20th, and went immediately into self-isolation.  The patient started to show minor signs and symptoms on March 25th, for which he sought medical guidance on March 27th and was swabbed on that day. The confirmatory test was completed today.  This is also an imported case.

The patient remains in self-isolation with minimal symptoms and is stable.

The surveillance team of the Ministry of Health has started a mapping exercise of this patient and any potential contacts.

The Prime Minister Rt. Hon. Dean Barrow will be making a statement on Monday, March 30th, on new measures to be implemented to prevent the spread of the virus.

 

Government of Belize Enacts Quarantine Order for Entire Country

Belmopan. March 26, 2020. The Government of Belize, in response to the COVID-19 crisis, and in an effort to mitigate the negative impacts that could result from a potential community spread of the deadly virus enacted Statutory Instrument Number 38 of 2020 on March 25, 2020.

This Order made by the Quarantine Authority of Belize, in exercise of the powers conferred upon it by section 6 of the Quarantine Act, Chapter 41 of the Substantive Laws of Belize, Revised Edition 2011, outlines a set of immediate measures to be implemented by the Government that are deemed as necessary to safeguard public health and prevent the spread of COVID-19.

This Order shall apply to the country of Belize with the exception of Ambergris Caye, which is governed by the Belize Constitution (Emergency Powers) (Ambergris Caye) Regulations, 2020, provided however that on the expiration of the period of emergency pursuant to the Proclamation declaring a state of public emergency in Ambergris Caye, this Order shall apply to the entire country of Belize.

These measures, referred to generally as the QUARANTINE (COVID 19 EMERGENCY MEASURES) ORDER, 2020 include the following:

  1. Limitation of gatherings of ten persons or less

Subject to the provisions of this Order, no person shall gather in numbers of more than ten persons at a time, anywhere in Belize, whether in any public place, public space or on private property provided that a gathering of ten or more persons on private property is allowed where persons are residents of that property.   Except for residents of private property, persons in a gathering of ten persons or less shall maintain a distance of no less than three feet between each person.

Social distancing.

For the purposes of this Order, every person shall practice social distancing.

  1. Transportation.
  • Notwithstanding the restriction and limitation on public gathering, the provision of public transportation by bus is limited to the seating capacity of the bus.
  • Every bus operator arriving at a terminal in Belize shall park the bus, instruct the passengers to disembark and oversee the sanitization of the bus by personnel on site at the terminal.
  • Prior to boarding any bus at a terminal, every passenger shall wash and sanitize his hands at the conveniences provided at the terminal.
  1. Closure of businesses.

The following establishments shall close until further notice­–

    • casinos and gaming establishments;
    • spas, beauty salons and barber shops;
    • gymnasiums (gyms), sporting complexes;
    • discotheques, bars, rum shops and night clubs;
    • restaurants, saloons, diners, and other similar establishments, provided that restaurants, saloons diners and other similar establishments may operate to offer take out services only;
    • any other establishment or business designated by the Quarantine Authority by Notice published in the Gazette.
  1. Social distancing protocols.

Every business establishment allowed under this Order to operate shall­:

  • ensure that all customers and staff maintain physical distancing of no less than three feet (3ft.) in or outside their business;
  • determine the number of persons that may be permitted in the establishment at any one time;
  • within twenty-four hours of the commencement of this Order, place distance markers three feet apart, indicating where each customer must stand on a line at a check out point;
  • within twenty-four hours of the commencement of this Order, place distance markers three feet apart on the outside of the establishment, indicating where customers must stand while waiting to enter the establishment.
  1. Restriction on social activities.

No person shall host nor attend–

  • a private party which includes any person from outside of the immediate household of the house occupant;
  • a recreational or competitive sporting event;
  • a wedding which hosts ten or more persons other than the bride, bridegroom, official witnesses and the marriage officer;
  • a banquet, ball or reception;
  • any social event;
  • any other ceremony of public worship in any facility or public place which involves the participation of any member of the general public or a congregation;
  • a funeral, except ten members of the immediate family and at least one officiant and essential mortuary staff; or
  • a meeting of a fraternal society, private or social club or civic association or organization.
  1. Closure of markets and other public places

In the interest of public health and safety, the Quarantine Authority may by Notice published in the Gazette, declare the closure of any market or other public place.

  1. Reporting of suspected COVID 19 to Ministry of Health

A person who develops flu-like symptoms and who reasonably suspects he may have had contact with someone who has travelled to a country affected by COVID 19 or is infected with COVID 19­

  • shall immediately inform the Ministry with responsibility for health; and
  • go into self-isolation in accordance with the guidelines of the Ministry responsible for health.
  • Every person, upon entry into Belize from any port of entry, shall (1) immediately inform the Ministry with responsibility for health of their entry into Belize; and (2) go into self-isolation in accordance with the guidelines of the Ministry with responsibility for health.
  1. Employers to grant permission
  • An employer shall have a duty if satisfied that an employee is able to discharge the duties of that employee from the employee’s place of residence, to grant the employee permission to do so without imposing any adverse consequences to the employee in respect thereof.
  • An employee whose assigned tasks can only be discharged at the place of employment is required to attend for work at that place unless otherwise permitted by the employer as a part of the employer’s measures to combat the risk of transmission of the COVID 19 at the place of employment.  The grant of permission to an employee under this paragraph shall not count against the leave entitlements of that employee unless otherwise agreed between the employer and the employee.
  1. Offence and Penalty

A person who contravenes or incites a person to contravene any provision of this Order, commits an offence and is liable on summary conviction to a fine of one thousand dollars or to imprisonment for six months or to both fine and imprisonment.

  1. Duration of order

The Order shall be in valid until revoked by the Quarantine Authority.

Anyone having any questions regarding this Order, may contact the Ministry of Health in Belmopan at 0-800-MOH-Care, or visit covid19.bz for more information.


COVID-19 Test Samples

Belmopan, March 25, 2020. The Ministry hereby provides a report on an initial mapping exercise in San Pedro Town, Ambergris Caye. The mapping exercise allowed the Ministry to test seven persons who were the immediate contacts of the index case. One immediate contact from those individuals resulted as a positive case. The patient is stable and has no signs or symptoms as of today. All other samples are negative. To date, there are two confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Belize.

In addition, five other samples which were collected from two other districts all tested negative. As part of the ongoing enhanced surveillance, further tests which were collected today, March 25th, in San Pedro and other districts will be processed at the lab later today. The Ministry of Health will continue its enhanced public surveillance across the country.

The public is advised that the Central Medical Laboratory in Belize City is the only laboratory certified to test for COVID-19. Therefore, the public is urged to disregard and avoid sharing all unconfirmed, misleading and/or false information about COVID-19 cases. The Ministry will continue to provide accurate information to the public in a timely fashion

Additional Measures Following the Announcement of First Case of COVID-19 in Belize

Belmopan. March 23, 2020. The Government of Belize continues to make decisions based on science, facts, and lessons learned from other countries for the safety and well-being of all citizens.

Coming out of the COVID-19 National Oversight Committee meeting held today, March 23rd, the following additional measures are going into effect:

  1. A state of emergency has been declared for Ambergris Caye for 72 hours to allow the Ministry of Health to conduct the proper mapping and tracing of contacts following the announcement of the first confirmed case of COVID-19 in San Pedro Town, Ambergris Caye. Therefore, no person will be allowed to leave or enter Ambergris Caye during this time. Unauthorized vessels will be banned from leaving or arriving to the island.
  2. With immediate effect, all bars, clubs, lounges, and casinos countrywide will be closed.
  3. Restaurants will be closed for dining-in effective Wednesday, March 25th at 11:59 p.m. Thereafter, only take-out services will be allowed.
  4. A press conference will be held on Wednesday, March 25th to present economic relief measures in order to ease the burden on Belizeans who are being affected by this crisis.

COVID-19 has created an unprecedented challenge to our way of life as Belizeans; however, we must all do our part to ensure our safety and the safety of others. The Government continues to emphasize the best practices to avoid the spread of COVID-19:

  • Practice social distancing by staying home and avoiding large crowds.
  • Wash hands regularly with soap and running water for 20 seconds.
  • When coughing or sneezing, cover the mouth in the inside of elbows or inside a tissue to be disposed of immediately.
  • Avoid close contact with persons who have flu-like symptoms.
  • Avoid sharing personal items and disinfect common surfaces.
  • If you have travelled to areas where COVID-19 is circulating and you are experiencing fever, cough, or difficulty breathing, seek medical attention immediately.

The Government advises the public to be guided by facts. To stay informed and updated on the evolving COVID-19 situation, follow the Facebook pages of the Ministry of Health, the Office of the Director of Health Services, and the Government Press Office. Updates can also be viewed at www.pressoffice.gov.bz. The dedicated hotline is 0-800-MOH-CARE (0-800-664-2273). Queries can be emailed to [email protected].

Ministry of Health Announces First Case of COVID-19

Belmopan. March 23, 2020. The Ministry of Health announces the first confirmed case of COVID-19 in Belize. The patient is a 38-year-old female, Belizean national who resides in San Pedro.

The patient arrived in Belize on Thursday, March 19th, and sought medical attention at a private health facility with symptoms on Friday, March 20th. Her recent travel history shows she travelled from Los Angeles, California and transited through Texas. Based on this travel history and symptoms she exhibited, Belize’s health system was alerted and due process and protocol started. All necessary precautions were taken on the Ministry’s end.

The sample was processed for other flu viruses and an initial screening for COVID-19 was carried out at the same time. It was confirmed as positive for COVID-19 at approximately 10:45 p.m. on Sunday, March 22nd.

The patient’s infection seems to be travel-related and the necessary steps are being taken to contain community spread. The initial measures include:

  • Dispatch of two health teams to San Pedro to continue with the mapping exercise of all potential contacts;
  • The timely identification and contact tracing for all potentially exposed persons; and
  • Shifting of health tasks at the San Pedro Polyclinic.

In addition to the restrictions already implemented, the Government of Belize will now scale-up restrictions and recommendations for residents/non-residents of the island of San Pedro to prevent community spread.

In accordance with international standards, the Ministry of Health will proceed to notify the World Health Organization and Pan American Health Organization through the International Health Regulations platform.

At this time, the surveillance team is still conducting investigations with the patient to determine the level of contact she may have had with other individuals. Those persons may now be isolated, tested and closely monitored for 14 days, and it may include mandatory quarantine.

The Ministry continues to investigate and report on any suspected cases. There is ongoing monitoring of Belize’s points of entry, and the reviewing and adjusting of methods or protocols to further strengthen prevention and precaution methods, insisting on self-isolation methods and mandatory quarantine as the cases may require.

The public is hereby advised to remain calm and to continue to follow all the necessary prevention messages. Continue to wash hands frequently with soap and clean water, cover the mouth when coughing and sneezing, and to avoid close contact with those who are ill. All persons having flu-like symptoms are asked to stay home, self-isolate, and call the hotline at 0-800-MOH-CARE for further guidance.

Remarks by the Rt. Hon. Prime Minister At Press Conference on COVID-19 – March 12, 2020

The main priority of the Government of Belize is the safety and wellbeing of the citizenry.  As of today, there are no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Belize but this is an ever-evolving situation. The public health, social and economic ramifications are such that absolute focus and the greatest concentration of effort are required to grapple with them. Belize is therefore preparing for all scenarios and being guided by the lessons and best practices coming to us everyday from our own professionals and from the experiences of countries regionally and globally.

The Cabinet convened a special meeting yesterday to address COVID-19.  Coming out of that meeting, Cabinet confirmed the establishment of a COVID-19 Task Force and a COVID-19 National Oversight Committee.  I have asked the Leader of the Opposition, and he has accepted, to co-chair with me the National Oversight Committee. Apart from Government and Opposition, the Committee will be made up of representatives from the Belize Council of Churches, the Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the Belize National Network of NGOs and the Belize Social Security Board. The NTUCB has also been invited to name a representative but has not yet responded.

The purpose of this Committee is to provide ultimate overall supervision of Belize’s efforts to deal with COVID-19.  The day to day public health response will, of course, be the principal responsibility of the Ministry of Health and the COVID-19 Task Force and you will shortly hear extensively from the DHS in this regard. Accordingly, while the National Oversight Committee in its efforts at superintendency will look at everything, it will especially zero in on the economic aspects of the crisis. Thus, at our first meeting scheduled for this coming Monday, we will hear from the Governor of the Central Bank, the Financial Secretary, and the CEO of the Ministry of Economic Development. They, together with SSB, will help the committee map out the necessary response to deal with the impacts of the crisis on employees, employers and all sectors of the Belize economy.  Matters we will be looking at include: emergency aid to workers; a possible tax payment extension; a supplementary allocation for Corona-related outlays; duty free importation of essential supplies; a moratorium on loan repayments at banks and credit unions; and post-Corona stimulus by even more accelerated capital spending, salary advances etc.

The second entity we are creating is the COVID-19 Task Force.  That will be chaired by Dr. Marvin Manzanero, Director of Health Services. It will include mainly representatives from the frontline Government and quasi-government agencies. But all the Social Partners are being asked to participate as well in this committee. We are also seeking expert assistance for the committee, to come from both locals not in the public service and from foreign Governments willing to help. We have in particular reached out to our Cuban friends and will seek from them one or more public health experts to join their medical brigade already in our country. Taiwan seems to have had great success in dealing with this crisis so we will also be looking to borrow some of their officials. Locally, persons such as Laura Longsworth, Head of the National AIDS committee, retired Belizean Dr Michael Vernon who worked in the US with the CDC, and the heads of agencies like the Diabetes Association can also be pressed into service.  I need to make clear that while this Task Force is now being expanded and formalized, the Ministry of Health has had its own working group operational since January 2020. Dr Manzanero will also say more about this and speak to all that has already been done and is being done. The newly named and beefed up Task Force will meet weekly or as often as may be needed.

I also need to point out that as the key implementing agency the Ministry of Health already has in place a COVID-19 plan. The Task Force will refine and further develop this plan as we go along; but one of the elements already agreed on is a communications strategy to ensure the delivery to the public of accurate, up-to-date information regarding COVID-19.

Internationally, COVID-19 is constantly evolving. Thus, the Government is also working with our external partners to coordinate responses and to keep updated on the latest information and best practices. We will continue to do everything in the effort to keep Belizeans safe. In this context we have to be prepared at any moment to respond properly as the threat evolves. Accordingly decisions have to be taken on the following:

Whether or not to allow cruise ships to enter;

Whether or not to disallow large gatherings;

Whether or not to close schools;

Whether or not to ban air travel;

Whether or not to restrict freedom of entry at our land borders;

These are not easy decisions to make given the obvious and astronomical impact they would have on us and the economy, especially tourism. But nothing is more important than preserving the health of our people; nothing is more important than saving Belizean lives. I did not want to announce any such decision today without putting our country, as well as those that visit and service Belize, on notice. But I advise now that immediately after this press conference I will be meeting with the health team and speaking to the Leader of the Opposition. I will, of course, also be talking to tourism and business stakeholders.

Shortly thereafter I would expect to announce when, not if, any or all of the cited measures will go into effect.

Meantime, we want immediately to discourage all non-essential travel and prescribe the start of social distancing.

I want to close on a note of reassurance. I wish not to be facile, not to be simplistic because I cannot underestimate the looming danger. But neither can I sell short our ability to get through this. At a time like this Government is called upon to be the nation’s guardian; and each of us is called upon to be the other’s keeper. It is together, therefore, that we face this crisis; it is together that we will address this crisis; and it is together that we will overcome this crisis.

Belize will emerge, Belize will rebound, God bless Belize! Thank you.

BVI on Coronavirus

Premier Andew A. Fahie Statement On the FIRST CASE OF Coronavirus Disease COVID-19
March 25, 2020

Good day and God’s blessing to all.

Thank you for joining us today for what is an important development with the Coronavirus Disease COVID-19. I wish to officially announce that the British Virgin Islands today has confirmed its first (two) imported cases of Coronavirus Disease COVID-19. We received the information this morning and we were taking the time to confirm the details surrounding the cases and we needed to ensure that the patients were notified.

I will share with you the information we have available now, and additional information as soon as it becomes available. One patient is a 56-year-old male resident who had travelled recently from Europe exhibiting mild symptoms. The male patient arrived on Tortola from the Terrance B. Lettsome Airport on March 15. Because of his travel history and symptoms, this patient contacted the medical hotline on March 16 and was tested on that day and has been in quarantine at his home since then.

Patient B is also a 32-year-old male resident who had travelled recently from New York, USA and came in contact with a person who tested positive for COVID-19 on March 8. The patient arrived on island on March 10. He was notified on March 15 of him coming into contact with a positive case and contacted the Medical Hotline on the same day. He was tested on March 16 and remained in quarantine at his home since then. Both cases are unrelated.

The samples were collected and sent to the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA), where laboratory tests confirmed positive results today on March 25. The two patients and their close contacts have already been informed are under mandatory quarantine at home. The two patients infection were travel-related.

However, the Ministry of Health and Social Development’s epidemiological unit is taking the necessary steps to prevent the risk of community spread. You will hear more from the Minister of Health on those specific measures. This is not the time for anyone to fear. Instead, let us continue to take every precautionary measure to prevent the virus from spreading. Practice social distancing. Wash and sanitize hands regularly. Avoid touching the face. Cover your mouth when you cough. If you feel sick, do not go to the doctor.

Call the medical hotline at 852-7650, so that you can get the appropriate treatment and to protect others. Vigilance is very important. We all have an individual responsibility to do not become complacent. We have to now protect each other.

People of the Virgin Islands, we must continue to do your part. Each of you must ‘keep you safe’, so that everyone else can be safe.

I want to reiterate that your Government has been and continue to be fully transparent with you in this matter of protecting your health, safety and welfare, and that of your loved ones. We have been providing regular updates on all relevant information. We are working round the clock because this is a fluid situation and we know you are concerned, but now is the time for all of us to remain calm. There is no need to feel ashamed or to stigmatise anyone who gets tested. We have to look out for each other, for in doing so we are looking out for ourselves.

We can and we will successfully overcome the challenges of this time. Our God is with us and he has seen us through many challenges. Let us continue to pray and to take the precautions. Let us continue to unite in the face of adversity, and we will prevail. Let us continue to do our part so that all would be well.
May God continue to watch over His Virgin Islands people.

The British Virgin Islands Places Moratorium on Cruise Ships for Next 30 Days to Protect Against COVID-19

TORTOLA, British Virgin Islands, March 16, 2020 – On March 14th, citing the World Health Organization (WHO) declaring COVID-19 a pandemic, the Government of the Virgin Islands announced the immediate closure of the Tortola cruise port, allowing no cruise ships to call on the territory for a 30 day period in an effort to protect the Territory from potential contamination. At present there are no confirmed cases in the islands.

Also, the number of international ports of entry into the British Virgin Islands (BVI) have been limited to facilitate the effective screening of passengers. The three ports that remain open are Terrance B. Lettsome International Airport, Road Town and West End Ferry Terminals, and one cargo port of entry – Port Purcell. The entry of passengers and crew members who have traveled to, from or through COVID- 19 affected countries as specified in a list of countries of special interest within a period of 14 days or less, will not be allowed. Additionally, the entry of passengers and crew members who have traveled to, from or through COVID-19 affected countries classified as a high-risk country within a period of 14 days or less immediately preceding their arrival in the territory, will be subject to advanced screening procedures and may be quarantined for a period of up to 14 days based on the outcome of the risk assessment.

Locally, any mass gatherings or festivals that were scheduled to take place in the BVI during the next month will be postponed until further notice. This includes the 2020 BVI Spring Regatta, scheduled for March 30 – April 5, and the Virgin Gorda Easter Festival scheduled for April 11-13.

“After extensive consideration, the British Virgin Islands made the prudent decision to put stringent measures in place to temporarily enhance the protocols for entry into the Territory until April 13,” said Honourable Andrew A. Fahie, Premier, Minister of Finance & Minister responsible for Tourism. “It is imperative that we prioritize our limited resources to safeguard our residents and our guests. Tourism is our mainstay and it is important that we take measures to ensure our long-term sustainability.”

Premier Fahie continued, “Our tourism industry has faced many crises before, from natural disasters to epidemics, and we have always come out strong on the other side. After much anticipation, we are at the start of a big celebratory year as many of our beloved resort products are finally reopening following extensive rebuilding. We also expect this summer to be busy in the BVI with rerouting of cruises and airline service in and out of the Caribbean.”

The public is reminded to take all necessary precautions against contracting the coronavirus. The risk can be reduced by implementing personal protective measures, such as frequent hand washing, covering nose and mouth when coughing or sneezing, and avoiding close contact with people suffering from acute respiratory illnesses.
For more information visit https://bvi.gov.vg/covid-19 .

About the British Virgin Islands
Known as a treasured destination rich in undiscovered experiences, the British Virgin Islands (BVI) is an alluring archipelago comprising 60 islands and cays located 80 kilometers (60 miles) east of Puerto Rico, in the northwestern region of the Caribbean Sea. The main islands of Tortola, Virgin Gorda, Anegada and Jost Van Dyke have attracted travelers globally with their cultural Caribbean authenticity. Located in Tortola, Road Town is the BVI’s capital. Ranked #1 Best Place to Visit in the Caribbean by U.S. News for three consecutive years in 2017, 2018 and 2019, the BVI is where nature’s best secrets are kept with an abundance of pristine beaches, azure seas, towering sage mountains and burnt-orange sunsets. It’s no wonder the BVI’s Virgin Gorda and Jost Van Dyke were featured on the “Top Islands in the Caribbean, Bermuda and the Bahamas” list in Travel + Leisure’s World’s Best Awards 2017 and 2018. Despite its status as a United Kingdom territory, the BVI uses the U.S. dollar as its official currency. For more information please visit www.bvitourism.com.

Media Contacts
Alexis Whitley, NJF /[email protected] /(646) 237-4526

Keith Dawson, British Virgin Islands Tourist Board & Film Commission
[email protected] / (284) 494-3134

Cayman Islands on Coronavirus

Tuesday, 24 March 2020 COVID 19 Updates

  • One positive test result potentially confirming community spread. All precautionary protocols, including isolation of loved ones and persons who came into contact with the person, are now in effect.
  • A mandatory curfew comes into effect tonight Tuesday 24th March from 7:00 pm to 5:00 am.  Non-essential persons flouting the curfew will be punished to the full extent of the Police Law.
  • All public transport is shut down from today. Private taxis will continue with no more than two passengers at any one time so that each passenger is able to distance himself or herself as far as possible from the other passenger and the driver.

Grand Cayman (GIS) – The Cayman Islands will be under a partial lockdown as from 7:00 pm tonight. “Staying home saves lives” is Government’s message.

Sounding a note of grave caution on Tuesday, 24 March 2020, Cayman Islands’ leaders, headed by His Excellency the Governor, Mr. Martyn Roper and the Premier, Hon. Alden McLaughlin, said the nation is now under an essential partial lockdown, following a potential case of community spread of the COVID-19 virus that was reported this morning.

Dr. John Lee said:

  • 14 additional cases have tested negative.
  • Results are expected from the CARPHA laboratory today.
  • Total confirmed cases is now 6, including 1 death
  • The new test case is from a patient at the HSA

Medical Officer of Health Dr. Samuel Williams-Rodriguez and HSA CEO Lizzette Yearwood said:

  • Additionally, eight family members of the patient and 14 staff members of HSA may have had contact with the person who tested positive at HSA and are in home isolation. The patient is still currently non-symptomatic for COVID-19.
  • The person has no travel history.

The Premier announced that Government has been overwhelmed by requests for “Shelter in Place” exemptions and it would be pointless for Government to proceed if all these orders were granted that we’ve received requests for.  Everyone is concerned about the economic consequences of the order that we are about to make – Government are too, but the economic consequences can never, I repeat can never be more important than lives.

The curfew will proceed tonight:

  • Curfew is in place from 7 pm until 5 am daily for next 10 days. The RCIPS will monitor streets for curfew violators who will be arrested.
  • From tomorrow (Wednesday, 25 March) Government will confirm all non-essential businesses that will be closed and all non-essential workers should stay home.

The following companies are entities whose employees may be required to work during the curfew and will be exempted.  They should have Company ID and a letter from the Company confirming the need for them to work during hours of curfew.

  • All emergency and essential services including the Police and Security Services,  911, Fire Service, Prison Service, Custom and Border Control, Department of Environmental Health and Island Waste Carriers.
  • Emergency medical including HSA, Health City, Doctors Hospital, Ambulance Services and all Doctors’ Offices.
  • Supermarkets, namely Fosters, Hurley’s, Kirk’s, Kirk Market in Cayman Brac, Billy’s Supermarket, Tibmart Co. Ltd, Cost U Less, Priced Right, Progressive Distributors, Cayisle Enterprises Ltd, Cayman Distributors Group, Jacques Scott Group, Blackbeard’s, Uncle Clems Distributors, Heston Ltd, Maedac Supply Ltd, MacRuss Superstore, Chisholms Supermarket
  • All retail banks
  • Utilities and Infrastructure namely Port Authority, Water Authority, Cayman Water Company, CUC, Sol Petroleum Cayman Ltd, Rubis Cayman Islands Ltd, Homegas Ltd, Ofreg, Cayman Brac Power and Light, Clean Gas, Refuel Ltd, Flow, Digicel, Logic and C3

The Governor said:

  • Government is encouraging the vast majority of workers in Cayman’s workplace to stay at home.
  • Civil Service has shut down large parts of its operations and those allowed to work from home to comply with Government required actions.
  • There is no evidence whatsoever of one or two law firms personnel having contracted COVID-19; that is fake news.
  • The emergency travel hotline for those needing to travel for emergency or compassionate reasons is 244-3333.

Minister of Health, Hon. Dwayne Seymour said:

  • Ten days of curfew are vitally needed to shorten the possibility of being crippled by the spread of COVID-19 locally.

Commissioner of Police Derek Byrne said:

  • With the order received from the Governor for the curfew, Police will enforce it over the 10 nights following.
  • Police will use common sense and use fairness but there will be strict application of the order for curfew.
  • Persons stopped will have their names and addresses taken with a view to prosecutions to proceed.
  • While Police will take a commonsense approach, the curfew is also not a free pass for persons to go pick up from work someone considered essential.

In response to queries, it was made clear that sources for information include gov.ky/coronavirus; and email address [email protected].

For the official Cayman Islands Government web portal, www.gov.ky
Web title: Tuesday 24th March 2020 Updates

Web blurb: Curfew starts 7 pm today, public transport shuts down

 

As of Wednesday,18 March 2020 there are no additional cases of COVID-19 in the Cayman Islands. There are currently 44 test results pending.

Inbound passenger air traffic will cease tonight, Thursday, 19 March, as scheduled in preparation for a complete closure of both ORIA and CKIA this coming Sunday, 22 March 2020, at 11:59 pm until Sunday, 12 April 2020, at 11:59 pm. Also commencing Sunday, 22 March at 11:59PM, local business closures and restrictions for an initial period of two weeks, require restaurants to solely provide take-out and delivery services while bars,spas,salons,gyms and public swimming pools are required to close.

A subsistence plan has been activated to support Caymanian public transportation providers and will provide a CI$600.00 payment as supplementary income during the initial airport closure period. Transportation providers who are Caymanian; approved to operate one 15-seater bus or vehicle of less than 15 seats; and are licensed as either a taxi, tour, dual (taxi and tour), or water sports operator qualify for the stipend and will be contacted directly to make arrangements. Further considerations for subsistence will be reviewed throughout the crisis.

For more official information on the Cayman Islands’ ongoing response to the coronavirus, please visit www.gov.ky/coronavirus and www.hsa.ky/coronavirus.

RCIPS Helicopter in Life Saving Mission to Stricken Cruise Ship

A team from the RCIPS Air Operations Unit carried out a mission on Saturday, 14 March 2020 to deliver emergency medical supplies for The MS Braemar cruise ship, which is currently off the Bahamas and unable to dock at present due an outbreak of COVID-19 onboard.

The medicines, which are not related to COVID-19 treatment, were standard prescription items which were urgently required by passengers and in good supply on Cayman. The operation was coordinated by the Governor’s Office and the British High Commission in Nassau. The supplies were landed in the Bahamas and were delivered to the ship, which  is off Grand Bahama, by the British High Commission.

The MS Braemar has over 680 passengers onboard most of whom are British. They include a number of people who are in urgent need of the medicines.

The operation was authorised by Governor Martyn Roper and Premier Alden McLauglin.

The Governor commented, “Once again we are extremely grateful to the team at the RCIPS Air Operations Unit for their service. This mission was vital to ensure the passengers on the Braemar had access to life saving medicines. My thanks also go to the pharmacy team at the HSA for providing such a professional response.”

Premier Alden McLaughlin said, “This is a time when the world needs to come together to help each other. The RCIPS helicopter has proved vital in saving lives not only in Cayman but also in the region. This operation was essential to provide vital medicines to vulnerable passengers and I am pleased that here in Cayman we have the capability to protect people at home but also to help those in distress on the sea.”

First Case of COVID-19 in Cayman Islands Confirmed

CAYMAN ISLANDS (GIS)– The Public Health Department confirms that one of the persons tested recently for the novel coronavirus has tested positive. “The patient is a visitor who was transferred from a cruise ship for a critical cardiac issue,” said Medical Health Officer, Dr. Samuel Williams-Rodriguez.

Dr. Williams continued, “The patient was doing well but subsequently developed breathing difficulties, was isolated and a test taken has confirmed is suffering with the novel coronavirus.”

The remainder of the samples sent to the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) for testing on Monday, 9 March came back negative today (Thursday, 12 March 2020).

“The patient has been isolated and is receiving medical support having tested positive for the COVID-19,” Dr. Binoy Chattuparambil, Clinical Director of Health City Cayman Islands confirmed.

The public is reminded to take all necessary precautions against contracting the coronavirus. The risk can be reduced by implementing personal protective measures, such as frequent hand washing, covering nose and mouth when coughing or sneezing and avoiding close contact with people suffering from acute respiratory illnesses.

For more information about how to do so, visit www.hsa.ky/coronavirus and www.gov.ky/coronavirus.

COVID-19: Cayman Islands Prepared as Regional Cases Confirmed

GRAND CAYMAN (GIS) – The Ministry of Health, Public Health Department and the management of the Health Services Authority (HSA) are in a high state of preparedness for the coronavirus (COVID-19). As of 5 March 2020, there are no cases in the Cayman Islands.

The opening of the Cayman Islands National Emergency Operations Centre (NEOC) on Wednesday, 4 March brought together Government and community partners to prepare for the possibility of the virus reaching Cayman. NEOC is coordinating efforts including health, economic continuity, uniformed and support services and utilities. Teams are meeting at least once daily to share information and take key decisions.

While there are no confirmed local cases, the Public Health Department continues to work with international health partners, to monitor and prepare for the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak.

Chief Medical Officer, Dr. John Lee comments: “With confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Florida, the Dominican Republic and St. Barts concerns among local residents are real”.

He adds: “As more cases are confirmed worldwide, the overall risk of the coronavirus (COVID-19) coming to the Cayman Islands is high and the situation is evolving rapidly. Continuing preventative measures such as washing hands regularly and avoiding others with respiratory illnesses are essential. Increase your distance from people to a minimum of three feet, and preferably six feet. Having a family and household plan can also help to slow the spread of the disease.”

Dr. Lee concludes: “A review of our plans to protect residents and visitors is an ongoing process. We remain vigilant while working with stakeholders to ensure our borders are protected and that any imported case is managed efficiently to minimise the impact.”

International dialogue continues to take place. On Sunday, 1 March, Hon. Roy McTaggart, Minister for Finance and Economic Development, and other senior government and health officials, represented the Cayman Islands Government via video link at a Special Emergency Meeting of the Conference of the Heads of Government (CARICOM). The meeting was convened to discuss regional preparations and response to COVID-19.

In response to the high level of preparedness and response to COVID-19 by on-island stakeholders, Minister for Health, Hon. Dwayne Seymour, emphasises that since the number of cases continues to grow globally, persons must remain prepared.

“It is essential that we separate fact from fiction when it comes to the constantly evolving information about the virus. Please visit hsa.ky for the facts. I am grateful to the experts from the Ministry of Health, Public Health Department, the HSA, Hazard Management Cayman Islands and the wider civil service who ensure the community remains safe and prepared. I urge you to continue to look out for each other and to prepare thoroughly, while guarding against stigma and panic,” Minister Seymour stresses.

Premier, Hon. Alden McLaughlin, thanked the Ministry of Health for their leadership and expressed confidence in the steps that the Cayman Islands had taken to prepare for COVID-19.

“We understand that members of the public have many questions around the possibility that this virus reaches Cayman. I assure them that our country has world-class structures in place encompassing both public health and hazard management. With experts meeting daily, planning for every eventuality and with Government’s full support behind them, I am confident that we will be able to achieve the best possible outcome when it comes to protecting the Cayman Islands and its people.”

Minister for Financial Services and Home Affairs, Hon. Tara Rivers says:  “HMCI is well equipped and stand-ready to coordinate a multi-agency national response. Past experiences have stress-tested our approach and our agencies’ ability to respond.”

“The financial services industry is following its business continuity plans, in order to ensure that services continue,” Minister Rivers adds.

Minister for Tourism, Hon. Moses Kirkconnell, notes that coronavirus poses unique challenges for the local tourism industry. The Ministry and its agencies are continuing to work closely with public health and with security officials to protect the well-being of visitors and residents.  “The Ministry of Tourism is in close contact with cruise line partners and are adhering to established medical protocols with respect to the landing of cruise ships and passengers. Similar measures also apply to stayover visitors.”

For more information on COVID-19 and for guidance on how to best protect your household, please visit www.hsa.ky/public-health/coronavirus or contact the Public Health Department on 244-2621. Details of the steps that Government is taking to combat the disease are also available from www.gov.ky/coronavirus.

Notes for Editors:

  1. The official source of Cayman Islands Public Health information is www.hsa.ky/public-health/coronavirus and for wider Government information www.gov.ky/coronavirus
  2. A Q&A session can be found at https://youtu.be/wtlEumKDKFs
  3. Countries in the Caribbean that have confirmed COVID -2019
  • Dominican Republic
  • St. Martin
  • St. Barthélemy (St. Barts)
  1. Public information email for the HSA is [email protected]
  2. In the Cayman Islands there are two public hospitals and two private.

Cayman Islands Tourism Sector Remains on Alert During the Coronavirus 2020 Outbreak

No reported cases in the Cayman Islands as of 2 March 2020 

Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands (5 March 2020) The Cayman Islands Ministry and Department of Tourism (CIDOT) remains on alert as the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) continues to make impact around the globe and within the local economy.

“While the economic impact—current and potential—to our tourism sector is unquantified in this early stage of international crisis, efforts are being taken by the CIDOT to collaborate with tourism stakeholders to understand potential business disruption directly linked to the virus and travel restrictions,” commented the Hon. Moses Kirkconnell, Deputy Premier and Minister of Tourism.  “As a primary step, the CIDOT has issued an accommodation sector survey to licensed properties throughout the Cayman Islands.  This will establish a baseline assessment of the impact coronavirus has had on our tourism sector thus far and provide insight on potential areas of concern for the sector in the coming months.  The results will be utilised to create any necessary action plans to support the industry as the virus progresses and enable CIDOT to support partners with responses to the consumer and trade markets.”

In addition to the accommodation survey, a thorough review of the department’s international marketing and promotions plans is being actioned to ensure that marketing activity is scaled in relation to countries now facing significant in-country transmission of COVID-19.

As of Friday, 28 February, the Cabinet of the Cayman Islands Government issued Regulations to control the entry of persons to the Cayman Islands who have a travel history to mainland China under the Public Health Law (2002 Revision). Visitors who have been in China in the preceding fourteen days will be denied entry; this restriction is in line with many of our regional neighbours and countries further afield. As outlined in the official CIG statement (Cabinet approves travel restrictions); at this time, the Ministry of Health recommends only essential travel between Cayman and the following countries because the World Health Organization reports that they have had five or more cases where exposure to COVID-19 has occurred within country:

  1. France
  2. Germany
  3. Hong Kong
  4. Iran
  5. Italy
  6. Japan
  7. Macau
  8. Republic of Korea
  9. Singapore
  10. Taiwan
  11. Thailand
  12. United Arab Emirates
  13. Viet Nam

“The Ministry and Department are monitoring all developments related to this threat, and will support appropriate communication, education and prevention initiatives instituted by the Cayman Islands Government,” commented the Hon. Mr. Kirkconnell. “Within the confines of our legislation we are committed to working with our tourism partners to understand and mitigate potential economic impact to the country’s thriving tourism sector while keeping the safety of our residents and visitors our main priority.”

An ongoing education campaign has been launched by the Health Services Authority, with support through official government channels and via social media, sharing best practices for personal hygiene, advice for residents traveling abroad and general infection control measures.

The Ministry and CIDOT will continue to support the official government efforts, public health authorities and other relevant agencies who are leading the charge to educate residents and visitors on associated risks, symptoms, and preventative measures.

“Our tourism industry has demonstrated consistent resilience in the face of past epidemics and disasters that impact this dynamic sector,” commented the Hon Minister. “I am confident that through the efforts of our government, a strong strategic approach to maintaining a prosperous tourism industry, and the commitment from the people of the Cayman Islands to remain vigilant and informed during this crisis, we will continue to see the destination steadfastly succeed in the region.”

We encourage tourism partners and the wider Cayman Islands Community to become familiar with the protocols established to safeguard against COVID-19. Tourism businesses particularly accommodation properties must manage future bookings by disseminating the official information relating to reservations made from regions where the travel restrictions apply. Please visit official websites for the latest updates, advice, and general information such as these suggested links:

For further information specific to the Cayman Islands, please visit the Public Health Department’s official website at https://www.hsa.ky/public-health/coronavirus/ and https://www.hsa.ky/public_health/.

Curacao on Coronavirus

Curaçao Taking Proactive Approach To Address Coronavirus

WILLEMSTAD – March 18, 2020 – The safety and health of its citizens and travelers are of great importance to Curaçao. At this time, there have been three (3) confirmed cases of coronavirus (COVID-19), each occurring in patients with recent travel throughout affected global areas. The Curaçao Tourist Board is working in close collaboration with the Ministry of Public Health, Environment and Nature, the Curaçao Civil Aviation Authority and government agencies to monitor new developments and to continually adapt communications on policies accordingly. The Curaçao Tourist Board is actively involved to ensure that all parties follow proper safety precautions in accordance with the World Health Organization. The organization is also committed to maintaining open lines of communication with both residents and visitors to ensure they receive the most up-to-date information.

The island has strict protocols in place at the airport and seaport to ensure the optimal probability of detection, especially in people returning from high-risk areas. The government has enacted temporary restrictions on flights and has limited incoming traffic to returning residents, essential medical specialists, nurses, and professionals. The airport has also suspended all operations of its immigration E-Gates to control the spread of COVID-19. Information is available at Hato International Airport for any travelers experiencing symptoms or those traveling from known areas with widespread coronavirus transmission.

Please refer to www.curacao.com for additional information.

Media Contact: Diamond PR / [email protected] / 305-854-3544

Dominica on Coronavirus

Roseau, Dominica – (April 2, 2020) Discover Dominica Authority informs its regional and international audience of the current status of tourism industry given the current coronavirus pandemic.

Ports of Entry: All ports of entry are closed to passenger traffic until further notice. As such, no airlines or ferries are operating into Dominica with passengers. In Keeping with S.R.O. 13 of 2020, only air and sea cargo are allowed with exceptions for Aircraft, Ships or Other vessels carrying the following passengers; (a) Citizens of Dominica ; (b) resident diplomats; (c) medical personnel; (d) any other person authorized in writing by the Minister with responsibility for National Security.

Hotels: Properties are closed or in the process of temporary closures as guests have all departed. Please contact the property directly to get the latest update.

Yachts: Entry into the country and mooring offshore is not permitted at this time.

Ecotourism sites: All (12) ecotourism sites managed by the Government of Dominica through the Division of Forestry or Ministry of Tourism are closed until further notice. This is specifically to curtail the spread of the virus at the tourism facilities where hikers may use the washroom and interpretation facilities.

Educational institutions: All educational institutions including day care centres and preschools were closed on March 23, 2020.

Essential services: Banks, supermarkets, gas stations, pharmacies and medical facilities are open for limited hours on weekdays.

Assistance to the Industry: Given the significant economic impact which the coronavirus pandemic will have on the tourism industry, the Dominica Hotel and Tourism Association is advocating for fiscal and other support from local banks and the government for its membership. The Ministry of Tourism, International Transport and Maritime Initiatives is working with stakeholders within its portfolio to collect data to galvanize assistance for the tourism sector.

State of Emergency & Curfew: Effective April 1, 2020, the President of Dominica, His Excellency Charles Savarin issued Statutory Rules and Order No. 15 of 2020 which places the island in a State of Emergency as a result of COVID 19. As such, curfew hours are in effect as follows:
1. From 6 pm to 6 am from April 1, 2020 to April 20, 20, Mondays to Fridays.
2. From 6 pm on Fridays to 6 am on Mondays between April 1, 2020 to April 20, 2020.
3. From 6 pm on April 9, 2020 to 6 am on April 14, 2020.
4. Banks, credit unions, grocery stores, supermarkets, village shops, bakeries and petrol stations may remain open from 8 am to 2 pm Monday to Friday, while pharmacies may open between 6 am and 4 pm Monday to Friday.
• Movement of persons beyond the curfew hours shall only be permitted for work and providers of essential services (as outlined in SRO 15 of 2020), to seek urgent medical care, shop for groceries, conduct banking transactions, to care for a family member, pet or livestock or to engage in construction or manufacturing.
• Religious places of worship are closed except for weddings and funerals, which must be conducted utilizing stipulated guidelines issued by the Ministry of Health.
• All liquor licenses are suspended from April 1, 2020 to April 14, 2020.

For more information on Dominica, contact Discover Dominica Authority at 767 448 2045. Or, visit Dominica’s official website: www.DiscoverDominica.com, follow Dominica on Twitter and Facebook and take a look at our videos on YouTube

Dominica COVID 19 Status Update – March 30, 2020

Roseau, Dominica – (March 30, 2020)   Dominica recorded its 12th case of COVID 19 on March 30, 2020. The announcement was made by National Epidemiologist (Ag) Dr. Shulladin Ahmed at a press briefing.  The patient is a 70-year-old female who has been hospitalized.  Dr. Ahmed indicated that “all these (COVID -19) cases are at this time stable, clinically stable and some are asymptomatic.  There is no death.”  Dr. Ahmed further noted that a total of 37 contacts have been traced from three index cases, of which 17 were tested, 9 were positive and 8 negative.  Twenty-nine contacts were traced from 9 COVID-19 positive cases; while 24 were tested with negative results, however they remain in home quarantine for 14 days.  To date, 185 in country PCR tests have been conducted, of which 173 were negative.

Principal Nursing Officer (Ag) Mrs. Terrillia Ravaliere provided an update on the six government operated quarantine facilities located in Portsmouth, where 126 persons are currently housed.  The facility is supervised by a senior public health nurse who is ably supported by a family nurse practitioner, senior nurse/midwife, other nurses, community health aides, data entry/registration clerk and police security. The facility which was opened on March 21, 2020 is manned 24 hours a day.  One hundred and seventy-seven persons have been housed at the facility since operations commenced, however 51 persons were discharged for continuous home quarantine as the results of their COVID 19 tests were negative.   Dominica’s COVID-19 medical team will be complemented by 35 medical personnel from Cuba comprising 25 nurses, 6 doctors and 4 lab technicians.

Lincoln Corbette, Deputy Chief of Police, reassured the public that the Commonwealth of Dominica Police Force was doing all in its power to ensure that the curfew order issued from 10 pm on March 28, 2020 to 8 am on March 30, 2020 was adhered to. Illegal entrants into the island were arrested and taken to the government quarantine facility in Portsmouth.  There have been no security breaches at the quarantine facility or the COVID  19 hospital.

In a radio interview on March 30, 2020, Prime Minister of Dominica, Hon. Roosevelt Skerrit hinted that curfew measures may be extended with special consideration given to certain activities to be undertaken within a specific timeframe.  Prime Minister Skerrit said, “And so we intend to continue the measures that we have currently in place …but to allow for certain activities to take place during specified times. For example, we would allow for the grocery shops to open in the villages and the supermarkets to open for a specific timeframe.  But on weekends we’re saying that the entire country should be shut down and everybody should be home, with the exception of those who have to be out and those services would be defined in whatever regulations the government will issue in the next day or so.”

All were encouraged to continue to practice social distancing, frequent handwashing, good respiratory etiquette and to stay home as far as possible.

Weekly update press briefings on COVID 19 are held on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays and broadcast on all local radio stations.

For more information on Dominica, contact Discover Dominica Authority at 767 448 2045. Or, visit Dominica’s official website: www.DiscoverDominica.com, follow Dominica on Twitter and Facebook and take a look at our videos on YouTube.

Dominica COVID 19 Status Update – March 26, 2020

Roseau, Dominica – (March 26, 2020) As of March 25, 2020, Dominica recorded 4 new cases of COVID 19, bringing the total number of confirmed cases to 11. The announcement was made by National Epidemiologist (Ag), Dr. Shulladin Ahmed at a press briefing on March 25, 2020.

A total of 142 samples have been collected for testing, of which 118 have been tested. COVID 19 tests are done at the government laboratory located at the Dominica China Friendship Hospital and results are available in 24 hours. Eighty-six (86) persons are currently housed at a government quarantine facility in the north of the island. A COVID 19 isolation unit, capable of housing 8 patients, has been established at the main hospital in Roseau, and a special COVID 19 medical centre which can accommodate 25 patients is fully functional in the north of the island.

A medical team with specialized skills, comprising 25 nurses, 6 doctors and 4 lab technicians from Cuba will be on island from March 26, 2020 to assist Dominica in the fight against COVID 19.

In light of the increase in the number of confirmed COVID 19 cases, the country’s airports are closed to all non-essential flights effective midnight March 25, 2020. Additionally, all non-essential gatherings are limited to no more than 10 persons. Non-essential gatherings include restaurants, churches, sporting and recreational facilities, gyms, cinemas, night clubs, bars and most government offices.

Dominicans were encouraged to join the fight against COVID 19 by practicing proper hand washing hygiene, good respiratory/cough etiquette, minimize visits to senior citizens and persons with preexisting conditions, avoid hugging and hand shaking. Prime Minister of Dominica, Hon. Roosevelt Skerrit, had this advice for his people “People with underlying conditions, we are asking you to stay away, stay home …. and listen to the official advisory from the Ministry of Health.”

For more information on Dominica, contact Discover Dominica Authority at 767 448 2045. Or, visit Dominica’s official website: www.DiscoverDominica.com, follow Dominica on Twitter and Facebook and take a look at our videos on YouTube.

Dominica Ministry of Tourism, International Transport and Maritime Initiatives Organizes National Consultation on COVID-19

(Roseau, Dominica: March 20, 2020) The Ministry of Tourism, International Transport and Maritime Initiatives organized a National Consultation on Dominica’s response to the COVID-19 chaired by the Prime Minister Hon Dr. Roosevelt Skerrit.

Ministers of Cabinet were in attendance as well as leaders of private sector and civil society. The Dominica Hotel and Tourism Association, Dominica Association of Industry and Commerce, the Unions, Bank and Financial Institution Association, church and sports organizations were among those invited to make contributions on the impacts, actions being taken and recommendations for Dominica’s response to the COVID-19.

The following resulted from the National Consultation:

  • Government’s Intent to convene a parliamentary committee to review and prepare a response to the COVID-19 and Dominica
  • The appointment of Coordinator along with other personnel to lead Dominica’s response to COVID-19 and assist with logistical matters
  • Commitment by all involved to work with Government to address and implement the necessary steps to address COVD-19

Additionally, the following were reiterated:

  • Dominica is following the protocols set forth by the WHO, PAHO and CARPHA. We acknowledge the four stages of WHO Risk Management Approach to an Influenza Pandemic and confirm that Dominica is currently at Stage 1 – Prevention. Confirmation that there are no reported cases of COVID-19 on island. Consequently, led by the Ministry of Health, Wellness and New Health Investments but orchestrated in a multi sectoral approach, all the preventative steps are being adhered to and taken on island.

At the Ports:

  • The Government of Dominica has not closed its borders to travelers, however it is implementing stringent protocols at its ports of entry in accordance with relevant health advice.
  • The Government is using data from the Advanced Passenger Information System (APIS) in combination with ensuring that question #17 of the Customs/Immigration form is filled out so as to indicate the travelers most recent travels.  Additionally, all passengers are provided with a separate questionnaire that must be filled out in order to ascertain and confirm their recent travel and sent in advance to allow for appropriate preparation by Port Authorities
  • Special protocols have been set up for travelers from the identified hotspots and special screenings in an isolated area is being undertaken for travelers showing symptoms upon entry into the destination.
  • Hand sanitizers have been installed for use by the travelling public, frequent hand washing with soap and water is being encouraged, and the ports of entry are undergoing deep cleaning frequently in accordance with the protocols.

At the Hotels

  • Protocols for employees and guests of accommodations have been established and communicated.
  • They indicate actions to be taken should a guest or employee exhibit symptoms of COVID-19.
  • These protocols call for the symptomatic individual and all contacts to be provided with masks, isolated and health personnel to be notified
  • At which point the health professionals will take over
  • (A document detailing the protocol is attached)

For more information, please contact the Ministry of Health, Wellness and New Health Investments at:

Medical Hotlines: 1 767 448 2151 or 1 767 611 4325 or Toll Free at 1800 219

Websites: [email protected] or www.dominica.gov.dm

Grenada on Coronavirus

Issued April 1, 2020 – Grenada Adds Further Measures Under the LIMITED STATE OF EMERGENCY to Stem the Spread of Covid-19 

With effect from Tuesday March 30, 2020, the state of Grenada is in a 24 hour curfew to mitigate the community spread of COVID-19. As of Sunday March 29, Grenada has 9 confirmed cases of the novel Coronavirus, all being imported or import related cases. The Government of Grenada has taken these proactive measures to safeguard the citizens and visitors on island. The curfew is in effect until April 6, 2020 in the first instance when it will be reviewed.

Grenada closed its borders with effect from March 22, 2020 and only passenger flights to repatriate visitors to their home countries have been granted permission to land at the Maurice Bishop International Airport (MBIA).  We are grateful to all our international partners who have assisted us with this unprecedented exercise.

The Grenada Tourism Authority (GTA) offices are currently closed during the limited state of emergency period from 6pm on March 25 until April 15, 2020. The team at the GTA is working remotely and can be contacted on their work mobiles or company email.

We remain confident and optimistic that these measures will be effective in protecting the islands. We ask everyone to make a collective effort to stay at home and stay safe. The Government of Grenada will review the situation on April 15, 2020 and provide an update on the timelines to receive visitors again.

For further information please visit the Government of Grenada’s webpage at www.mgovernance.net/moh/ or the Ministry of Health’s Facebook page at Facebook/HealthGrenada.

Grenada Announces a Limited State of Emergency

The Government of Grenada enhances restrictions as part of ongoing efforts to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 on the tri-island nation 

As part of the proactive approach to stem the community spread of COVID-19, the Government of Grenada has announced a limited state of emergency for 21 days, effective Wednesday, March 25, 2020 at 6 p.m. Citizens will be allowed to leave their homes between the hours of  5 a.m. and 7 p.m. to conduct designated activities.

Grenada confirmed it’s first case of COVID-19 on Sunday March 22 and these measures were announced to protect the lives of Grenadians and visitors on our shores. The Ministry of Health continues to urge the public to practice proper hand, cough and sneeze hygiene, and maintain social distance of at least six feet.

Over the past few days, the Government of Grenada announced border closures as follows:

  1. Effective 11:59 p.m. Sunday, March 22nd, and until further notice, Grenada’s Airports will be closed to ALL commercial passenger traffic. Aircrafts carrying cargo and pre-approved medical personnel will be allowed to land, as necessary.
  2. Effective 11:59 p.m. Monday March 23, 2020, no crew member of commercial vessels will be allowed or granted “Shore Leave. Crew members are only allowed ashore for operational reasons after receiving permission from the Port Authority.
  3. Effective 11:59 p.m. on Friday, March 20th, all crew and passengers aboard Pleasure Craft and live-aboard will not be allowed to disembark on the shores of Grenada, Carriacou and Petite Martinique. All passengers and crew are encouraged to make contact via VHF and follow prescribed procedures for receiving their supplies and fuel, as needed.

Given the fluidity of the global COVID-19 pandemic, please note that all air travel and cruise ship advisories are subject to change, as more information becomes available. For further information please visit the Government of Grenada’s webpage at www.mgovernance.net/moh/ or the Ministry of Health’s Facebook page at Facebook/HealthGrenada.

Media Contact

Ria Murray / Communications Officer / Grenada Tourism Authority / [email protected]473 440 2001/2279 / 473 420 2557 (mobile)

For all our recent news releases go to www.puregrenada.com/news

 

Grenada’s Updated Response to the Threat of COVID-19

The Government of Grenada through the Ministry of Health (MOH) continues to work with all stakeholders to implement strong measures in response to the external threat of the novel Coronavirus (COVID-19). Grenada remains well-informed of the latest international developments while implementing measures to safeguard citizens and visitors alike. To date, Grenada has no confirmed cases of COVID-19.

The Government of Grenada issued the following travel advisory on March 19, 2020. Countries placed on Grenada’s restricted travel list now include: Iran, China, South Korea, Singapore, Japan, Europe including the United Kingdom and Ireland and the USA.

1) Effective Friday March 20, 2020 at 23:59pm, non-nationals originating from the above mentioned countries in the last 14 days will be refused entry into Grenada.  2) Effective Saturday March 21, 2020 at 23:59pm the USA will be added to the advisory as per the stipulations outlined above. 3) Grenadian nationals/residents travelling from any of the above locations will be selfquarantined for a period of 14 days upon arrival into Grenada. 4) If you are arriving from any other destination outside the list above you will be screened upon entry, and self-quarantined for 14 days. 5) Before disembarking, every passenger is required to complete a declaration form on his/her health status.  6) On March 16, the Government of Grenada announced that passengers will not be allowed to disembark from ANY cruise ship on the shores of Grenada, until further notice. 7) All yachts and small vessels will now be processed/screened through the Camper and Nicholson Port Louis Marina in Grenada and Carriacou Marine in the South West side of Tyrrel Bay in Carriacou. (T: 473 443 6292)

For the latest updates visit the Government of Grenada’s webpage at  www.mgovernance.net/moh/  or the Ministry of Health’s Facebook page at Facebook/HealthGrenada

Pure Grenada, the Spice of the Caribbean remains committed to delivering an outstanding experience to all our visitors. The health and safety of our visitors and citizens alike is of the utmost importance to us. We wish to remind you to continue to practice all safety and health protocols outlined by the Government. For those of you returning to your country of residence during this period, please contact your travel agent to make the necessary arrangements

Given the fluidity of the global COVID-19 pandemic, please note that all air travel and cruise ship advisories are subject to change, as more information becomes available. For further information please visit the Government of Grenada’s webpage at www.mgovernance.net/moh/ or the Ministry of Health’s Facebook page at Facebook/HealthGrenada.  The Ministry of Health has advised the public to continue using proper hygiene methods when they cough and sneeze and to practice social distancing. COVID 19 Hotline: (473) 53VIRUS – 538-4787 or 458-4787

Media Contact

Ria Murray Communications Officer,  Grenada Tourism Authority [email protected] 473 440 2001/2279 473 420 2557 (mobile) For all our recent news releases go to www.puregrenada.com/news

Jamaica on Coronavirus

“ESCAPE TO Jamaica” INSTAGRAM live SERIES DELIVERS a TASTE OF the destination

Virtual Care Package Aims to Lift Spirits During Social Distancing 

KINGSTON, JAMAICA – April 1, 2020 – The Jamaica Tourist Board (JTB) is using its digital platform to deliver a virtual care package to uplift and inspire followers around the world currently practicing responsible social distancing. On Friday, April 3 at 9:00 pm ET (8:00 pm Jamaica time), the JTB will kick off its “Escape to Jamaica” Instagram Live series featuring one of Jamaica’s leading disc jockeys, ZJ Sparks. The popular ZIP 103 DJ will host a dance party spinning the latest reggae and dancehall hits live from Jamaica, helping viewers chill and unwind after another week of social distancing.

“Escape to Jamaica” will occur weekly on the JTB’s Instagram channel. In addition to sharing irie vibes, the series will also feature live cooking demos and pre-recorded wellness sessions. The first wellness session will be on Monday, April 6 at 9:00 am ET (8:00 am Jamaica time), with Empress Thandi Wise, Certified Yoga Instructor from Rasta Wellness Centre and Jakes Hotel. On Wednesday, April 8 at 6:00 pm ET (5:00 pm Jamaica time) the cooking demos debut with Andre Fowles, Food Network Chopped Champion and Culinary Ambassador for Miss Lily’s in New York, Negril and Dubai.

“We’re aware that people from all corners of the globe may be in need of an escape with what’s happening right now. With this live series, Jamaica offers a virtual getaway through our music, cuisine, culture, warm people and that unmistakable Jamaican spirit,” said Donovan White, Jamaica’s Director of Tourism. “Since visitors are unable to come to us at the moment, we want to bring the “Heartbeat of the World” to their homes. Jamaica will be here to welcome travelers when the time is right. We want our followers to know we can only get through this together.”

Following is the current schedule of the “Escape to Jamaica” series, with additional dates to be announced:

  • April 3: ZJ Sparks – Zip 103
  • April 6: Empress Thandi Wise – Certified Yoga Instructor, Rasta Wellness Centre and Jakes Hotel
  • April 8: Chef Andre Fowles – Food Network Chopped Champion and Culinary Ambassador for Miss Lily’s in New York, Negril and Dubai
  • April 10: DJ Delano – Renaissance Disco
  • April 15: Rousseau Sisters – Jamaican Sisters, owners of SummerHouse in Kingston and Authors of Provisions, The Roots of Caribbean Cooking
  • April 17: ZJ Chrome – Zip 103

To participate, be sure to visit the JTB’s Instagram account at www.instagram.com/visitjamaica. Join the conversation with #EscapetoJamaica.

 

Tourism Ministry to Postpone All Public Activities in March

KINGSTON, Jamaica; March 12, 2020: The Ministry of Tourism wishes to advise the public that all previously advertised activities for March have been postponed, until further notice.

This decision is in keeping with the new COVID-19 health protocols, regarding public gatherings declared by Prime Minister Andrew Holness, at an emergency press briefing held at the Office of the Prime Minister yesterday evening.

The Prime Minister shared that “Where the law requires, the granting of a permit for any event or gathering, no permit will be issued within the next 14 days. That means any event, whether entertainment event, any gathering that requires the issuing of a permit. Permits that were already issued will be rescinded.”

He also asked that organisers of business meetings and large gatherings follow the protocols that have been established for personal care and hygiene.

Tourism Minister, Hon Edmund Bartlett says, “We must err on the side of caution in light of the new COVID-19 developments in the country. I have had several meetings with my team about these upcoming events and believe it is in the best interest of the public as well as the staff of the Ministry to postpone these events until it is safer to do so.”

Therefore, in the interest of public safety, the Ministry of Tourism will be postponing the following events:

  • Tourism Linkages Speed Networking event scheduled for March 12 at the Montego Bay Convention Centre
  • Tourism Worker’s Pensions Sensitization session scheduled for March 12 at Royalton Blue Waters
  • Tourism Worker’s Pensions Sensitization session scheduled for March 13 at the Montego Bay Civic Centre
  • Tourism Worker’s Pensions Sensitization session scheduled for March 13 at Glistening Waters in Falmouth
  • Tourism Service Excellence Awards scheduled for March 14 at the Montego Bay Convention Centre
  • TPDCO’s Call for Licence Applications roadshow scheduled for March 16-26 across the island
  • Jamaica Blue Mountain Coffee Festival scheduled for March 21 in Newcastle, St. Andrew

The Ministry will continue to monitor the situation and be guided by the protocols for the public health and safety outlined by the Office of the Prime Minister.  However, considerations are also being made, where appropriate, to execute some of these events remotely utilizing virtual communication applications.

“We are very technologically savvy and I am sure we can have some of these events remotely. However, we are still fine tuning these details and will advise the public once decisions have been finalised,” said Minister Bartlett.

The Ministry regrets any inconvenience these changes may cause and encourage the public to follow all health advisories to avoid spread of the virus.

For more information, contact:

Corporate Communications Division / Ministry of Tourism / 64 Knutsford Boulevard / Kingston 5

Tel: (876) 920-4926-30 / Fax: (876) 906 1729

 

National Statement: COVID-19 Delivered by Dr. the Hon. Christopher Tufton, Minister of Health and Wellness – 10 March 2020

Jamaica today confirmed its first imported case of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) here in Kingston

The patient is a Jamaican female who had travelled from the United Kingdom, which has cases of COVID-19. She arrived in the island on March 4, presented to the public health system on March 9 and has been in isolation since then.

Based on the patient’s travel history and symptoms, health professionals suspected COVID-19. A clinical sample was collected and sent to the National Influenza Centre, where laboratory tests confirmed the diagnosis today at approximately 11:00 am. The patient and family members have been informed.

The patient’s infection was travel-related. However, steps are being taken to prevent the risk of community spread.

These measures include:

  • The dispatch of a health team to the home of the patient for assessment and initiation of public health measures.
  • The identification and contact tracing for all possible exposed persons.
  • Meeting of Ministry officials with members of staff at the hospital and the necessary interventions put in place.

In addition, imposed travel restrictions remain in place. In fact, three countries have been added to the list of five (China, Italy, South Korea, Singapore, and Iran) that was previously made public. They are Spain, France and Germany.

The Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade and I met this morning with the ambassadors of those countries, together with the ambassador for the EU and have informed them that based on the risk assessment of community spread of the virus in those countries that travel restrictions would be imposed.

Further, I would like to advise that:

  • Public gatherings are discouraged.
  • Non-essential travel is discouraged.
  • We continue to patrol irregular border crossings.
  • Sensitisation of key personnel at all air and sea ports is ongoing.
  • We have designated FOUR (4) quarantine facilities and others will be identified.
  • We are finalising the retrofitting of isolation facilities in each of the island’s public hospitals.

On the readiness of the island’s health system, the Ministry has:

  • Developed the local capacity to test for the virus, thanks to training provided by the Pan-American Health Organization. It is on that capacity that we relied for this test result.
  • Assessed the readiness of our health facilities to meet the anticipated increase in demand on services.
  • Continue to address existing gaps, including with respect of additional supplies and equipment, though, at the present time, we have enough personal protective equipment in the island for our health facilities. We also have adequate stores of respiratory medicine for the next three months.
  • Trained and continue to train health care providers.

These efforts are supported by a communications campaign to keep each member of the population updated on the virus and its impacts and with oversight is provided by Prime Minister Andrew Holness-led National Disaster Risk Management Council.

I have also named a COVID-19 Response Advisory team that will support the Ministry of Health and Wellness’ planning and coordination with respect of this public health challenge. The members include:

  • Mr. Howard Mitchel, former president of eh Private Sector Organisation of Jamaica;
  • Mr. Christopher Zacca, CEO, Sagicor;
  • Mr. Owen Ellington, former Commissioner of Police;
  • Rev. Devon Dick, Jamaica Baptist Union;
  • Dr. Marina  Ramkisoon, Deputy Associate Dean, Faculty of Social Sciences, UWI;
  • Commander Wenyss Gorman, JDF;
  • Lieutenant Colonel Sydney Powell, JDF; and
  • ACP Calvin Allen, JCF.

The Ministry is also urging the public to adhere to infection prevention and control measures, notably to:

  • Maintain a distance of at least one metre from persons who are coughing or sneezing.
  • Frequently perform hand hygiene by washing hands thoroughly with soap and water or using a hand sanitizer if hands are not visibly soiled.
  • Cover our mouths and noses with a tissue when coughing or sneezing, and then discarding it.
  • And resist the habit to touch our faces.

For additional information, the public is encouraged to contact 888-ONE-LOVE (663-5683).

I want to use this opportunity to appeal to the public to remain calm and to implement all the advisories relating to personal hygiene, social distancing, and overall infection prevention control. The Government of Jamaica will continue to keep the public informed as we manage this public health challenge.

Martinique on Coronavirus

Martinique Takes Aggressive Measures Against COVID-19

New York – March 24, 2020 – Due to the spreading of the Covid-19, the French Government has established several measures to contain and decrease the spread of the Coronavirus on all its territory. Therefore, The Martinique Authority (CTM), the Martinique Tourism Authority, the Port of Martinique, the Martinique International Airport, the Regional Health Agency (A.R.S.)  along with all establishments of the public and private sector are taking an active part against the spread of the virus ensuring the safety of its local residents and present guests.

However, with this unexpected turn of events, all guests are strongly advised to return home.

Below is a summary of the restrictions implemented in Martinique:

Airports: In accordance to the French Government travel restrictions, Martinique International Airport is not allowing inbound flight anymore (leisure, family visit etc..) to the Island. And as a further step to stop the spread of COVID-19, all international flights to/from Martinique have been interrupted as of March 23rd, 2020.

Air service will only be authorized for
1)         The reunification of families with children or dependent person
2)         Professional obligations strictly necessary for the continuity of essential services,
3)         Health requirements.

Flights transport capacity from Martinique to France have been reduced to the same three criteria as of March 22 midnight.The same regulations apply between the 5 French overseas Islands: Saint-Martin, Saint-Barth, Guadeloupe, French Guyana and Martinique.

Cruise operations: The Martinique Port Authority has stopped all cruise calls scheduled for the season. Requests for technical stops will be treated case by case. Container transport activities are still maintained, as well as oil and gas refueling.

Maritime Transport: Due to the important decrease of passenger capacity allowed by the French authorities; all maritime transportations are suspended. Marinas: All activities at Marinas are discontinued.

Hotels & Villas: Due to travel restrictions, most hotels and villa rentals are bringing their activities to a close, while waiting for the departure of their last guests. No new guest will be allowed, and all the amenities such as pools, spa and other activities are closed to the public.

Leisure Activities & Restaurants: Due to the quarantine implemented by the French Government, leisure activities, restaurants & bars are closed to the public. Only restaurants inside hotels with guests are still operating, until the departure of their last visitors.

Economic Activities: In accordance to the restrictions in effect, all businesses are closed, and public transportation is no longer in operation. An exception is made for vital activities such as supermarkets, banks and pharmacies.

All the residents have the obligation to remain in confinement until further notice. For any necessary purposes such as food supply, sanitary reasons or essential work activities, an exemption certificate, available on the Prefecture of Martinique’s website, is mandatory.

For updates and more information about the COVID-19 and the measures in place in Martinique, please visit the Prefecture of Martinique website: martinique.gouv.fr

Monitoring and Prevention of COVID-19 in the French Caribbean Island of Martinique  

NEW YORK, March 12, 2020 – The Martinique Tourism Authority, the Port of Martinique, the Martinique International Airport are closely monitoring the island’s points of entry to prevent the spread of COVID-19, and ensure the safety of its residents and visitors.

As reported by the director of the Regional Health Agency’s (A.R.S.), the island is and remains in Stage 1 of a 3-stage prevention protocol established by the French Government in 2009 following the H1N1 flu epidemic. Stage 1 is prevention and all procedures and protective measures are in place:

* All disembarking cruise passengers are being systematically screened.  Anchorage, to come ashore for smaller luxury boats, is no longer permitted.  They must go to port terminals to be screened by the Regional Health Agency of Martinique.

Safety protocols are posted and implemented in all marinas and small ports.

* As of Thursday, March 5, 2020, sanitary measures are being enforced by the Regional Health Agency of Martinique with the presence of firefighters.

* Since, February 29, 2020, prevention notices have been posted at the airport and since March 4, airline passengers are given these notices prior to landing

* Additional sanitary inspectors have been positioned at the airport

* Martinique’s main hospital is prepared for any changes in this sanitary crisis, readied isolation units and expanded it testing capabilities

On March 11th, 4 confirmed cases of COVID-19 were announced by the Regional Health Agency (A.R.S.) in Martinique. These 4 cases are currently in isolation at the CHU Martinique Hospital, La Meynard, in a special and sheltered quarantine unit.

A crisis division was immediately activated by the ARS, to search for, identify and monitor contact cases: people who have had close and prolonged contact with infected patients.

In anticipation of this global outbreak, the A.R.S. and the CHU Martinique Hospital have been proactively preparing in the event of confirmed case in the island.

Speaking on this topic, the director of the Martinique Tourism Authority, Mr. François Languedoc-Baltus noted that “it is very important that our guests be aware that the regional and tourism authorities are prepared and have taken in the last weeks all the necessary steps to prevent and contain the virus.” He added that “Martinique has one of the best hospitals and healthcare systems in the Caribbean—on par with mainland France and the E.U.”

Meanwhile, the local population and visitors are reminded to follow established recommendations to prevent infection. These include:

  • Regular hand washing with soap and water or an alcohol based hand sanitizer
  • Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when coughing or sneezing and throw away after use or cough or sneeze into your elbow, not your hands.
  • Avoid close contact with anyone showing symptoms of respiratory illness such as coughing and sneezing.
  • If you have flu-like symptoms do not go to a doctor or hospital to avoid any spread of the virus and instead call emergency services, the SAMU (dial 15) and share your travel history. They will send a specialist to evaluate your symptoms.

For updates and more information about the COVID-19 and the measures in place in Martinique, please visit the A.R.S. website http://www.martinique.gouv.fr/Politiques-publiques/Environnement-sante-publique/Sante/Les-informations-sur-le-Coronavirus-COVID-19

PRESS CONTACTS

Géraldine Rome
Martinique Promotion Bureau (MTA USA)
T: 212-838-6887
E: [email protected]

 Marion Fourestier
Atout France
T :212-745-0963
E : [email protected]

Monitoring and Prevention of COVID-19 In the French Caribbean Island of Martinique

NEW YORK, March 11, 2020 – The Martinique Tourism Authority, the Port of Martinique, the Martinique International Airport are closely monitoring the island’s points of entry to prevent the spread of COVID-19, and ensure the safety of its residents and visitors.

As reported by the director of the Regional Health Agency’s (A.R.S.), the island is and remains in Stage 1 of a 3-stage prevention protocol established by the French Government in 2009 following the H1N1 flu epidemic. Stage 1 is prevention and all procedures and protective measures are in place:

* All disembarking cruise passengers are being systematically screened.  Anchorage, to come ashore for smaller luxury boats, is no longer permitted.  They must go to port terminals to be screened by the Regional Health Agency of Martinique.

Safety protocols are posted and implemented in all marinas and small ports.

* As of Thursday, March 5, 2020, sanitary measures are being enforced by the Regional Health Agency of Martinique with the presence of firefighters.

* Since, February 29, 2020, prevention notices have been posted at the airport and since March 4, airline passengers are given these notices prior to landing

* Additional sanitary inspectors have been positioned at the airport

* Martinique’s main hospital is prepared for any changes in this sanitary crisis, readied isolation units and expanded it testing capabilities

On March 10th, 3 confirmed cases of COVID-19 were announced by the Regional Health Agency (A.R.S.) in Martinique. These 3 cases are currently in isolation at the CHU Martinique Hospital, La Meynard, in a special and sheltered quarantine unit.

A crisis division was immediately activated by the ARS, to search for, identify and monitor contact cases: people who have had close and prolonged contact with infected patients.

In anticipation of this global outbreak, the A.R.S. and the CHU Martinique Hospital have been proactively preparing in the event of confirmed case in the island.

Speaking on this topic, the director of the Martinique Tourism Authority, Mr. François Languedoc-Baltus noted that “it is very important that our guests be aware that the regional and tourism authorities are prepared and have taken in the last weeks all the necessary steps to prevent and contain the virus.” He added that “Martinique has one of the best hospitals and healthcare systems in the Caribbean—on par with mainland France and the E.U.”

Meanwhile, the local population and visitors are reminded to follow established recommendations to prevent infection. These include:

  • Regular hand washing with soap and water or an alcohol based hand sanitizer
  • Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when coughing or sneezing and throw away after use or cough or sneeze into your elbow, not your hands.
  • Avoid close contact with anyone showing symptoms of respiratory illness such as coughing and sneezing.
  • If you have flu-like symptoms do not go to a doctor or hospital to avoid any spread of the virus and instead call emergency services, the SAMU (dial 15) and share your travel history. They will send a specialist to evaluate your symptoms.

For updates and more information about the COVID-19 and the measures in place in Martinique, please visit the A.R.S. website http://www.martinique.gouv.fr/Politiques-publiques/Environnement-sante-publique/Sante/Les-informations-sur-le-Coronavirus-COVID-19

PRESS CONTACTS

Géraldine Rome
Martinique Promotion Bureau (MTA USA)
T: 212-838-6887
E: [email protected]

 Marion Fourestier
Atout France
T :212-745-0963
E : [email protected]

Montserrat on Coronavirus

The government has imposed a 24-hour curfew from 28 March to 14 April. Here are the full details.

WHAT TIME IS THE CURFEW?

24 Hours Daily from 28th March at 6:00 p.m. until 14th April 2020 at 12 am. 

WHO DOES THE CURFEW APPLY TO?

Every person on Montserrat

DURING THE CURFEW WHAT IS A PERSON EXPECTED TO DO?

A Person is expected to remain at home, this includes the yard, or garden etc. of your place of Residence/Occupancy.

DURING THE CURFEW IS A PERSON ALLOWED TO LEAVE THEIR HOME?

Yes, BUT ONLY to :

  1. Work as essential service worker (this includes travelling to and from work)
  2. Work as an essential business (this includes travelling to and from work)
  3. assist, transport or provide an ancillary service for an essential worker
  4. seek medical care,

shop for necessities to include food, medicine, fuel or other necessity, BUT only one person from each household may be in the public place for this purpose, and the person shall not be in the public place more than once daily for this purpose,

  1. go to the bank or conduct a money transfer at western union or MoneyGram
  2. care for a family, vulnerable person or pet,
  3. engage in an activity to include walking, biking, hiking or swimming either alone or in a gathering that is not a large gathering; from 5 am to 8 am or 3 pm to 6 pm, BUT these activities must not be done with a person from another household so as to prevent cross-infection between different households (community transmission).
  4. arrive into Montserrat by ferry or airplane, BUT you must get home within 2 hours of arriving in Montserrat
  5. to transport someone who has arrived into Montserrat by ferry or airplane, BUT you must get residence/place of occupancy within two hours of transporting the person
  6. to leave Montserrat, BUT you must not leave your place of residence/home or occupancy before 4 am
  7. to transport a person who is leaving Montserrat, BUT you must not leave your place of residence or occupancy/home before 4 am.
  1. The members of the public are required to stay at home.

WHAT SERVICES ARE ESSENTIAL SERVICES?

  1. air traffic (including meteorological, telecommunication, security, fire and crash services connected with airports) services;
  2. fire, prison, defence force or police services;
  3. medical, health, hospital, infirmary or nursing home services;
  4. telecommunications or broadcasting services;
  5. water, electricity (MUL) or sanitation services;
  6. immigration, customs or postal services;
  7. services connected with sittings of the Legislative Assembly and meetings of Cabinet;
  8. services connected with the loading and unloading of ships and with the storage and delivery of goods at, or from a dock, wharf or warehouse operated in connection with the dock or wharf , NB. This does not include services such as sand mining;
  9. public services connected with the payment of salaries, pensions and other benefits, in government departments, agencies; statutory bodies and arms-length bodies;
  10. services connected with the Judiciary;
  11. services connected with essential government functions as determined by the Deputy Governor;
  12. airport, seaport, civil aviation or ferry services;
  13. a service that is granted permission to offer an essential service (By Minister of Health)

WHAT BUSINESSES ARE PERMITTED TO OPERATE?

  1. a banking business – which allowed to open 8 am to 12 pm
  2. a doctor’s office – which is allowed to open 8 am to 6 pm
  3. a grocery store, an agricultural produce business or a pharmacy- which is allowed to open 8 am to 6 pm. BUT only one person from each household is allowed to be out for the purpose of going to the grocery store, pharmacy or market.
  4. a gas station- which is allowed to open 8 am to 6 pm
  5. a bakery- which is allowed to open 8 am to 6 pm
  6. a business connected with fisheries 2 am to 7 pm
  7. as an undertaker – for 24 hours
  8. a money transfer business, from 8 am to 6 pm.
  9. a business or organisation that is granted permission (by the Minister of Health) to operate

*For the avoidance of doubt a bar, nightclub, restaurant, cook-shop (or any similar shop) barber shop, hair salon; insurance business or similar business is not an essential business.

NOTE

Most of the essential services are Governmental services and services provided by statutory bodies – Water and Electricity services means (MUL)An essential business supplier is a business place whose main business is to provide one of the essential business outlined. Eg. Grocery – if your main business is to sell groceries retail or wholesale then your business is an essential service.

Telecommunications – The telecommunications service providers – i.e. Flow and DIGICEL, not a store that sells or repairs phones.

Fisheries – Fishermen

Agricultural services – would relate to the Farmers and individuals who sell agricultural produce

Banking Business – Commercial Bank, Credit Union, Building Society

Money Transfer Business – Money Gram and Western Union 

Bakery – this is clear.

NOTE ALSO

The public buses and taxis are not permitted to run at this time – It is recognized that this may pose a challenge to some persons and options to address this are being explored. The concern is that a person is at great risk of contracting the virus if they travel in public transportation when one considers the medical evidence on the length of time the virus can live on surfaces.  Also the difficulty to practice physical distancing.

WHAT IS A BUSINESS THAT IS NOT AN ESSENTIAL SERVICE OR ESSENTIAL BUSINESS EXPECTED TO DO AS OF MARCH 28TH AT 6 PM

Close. Stop operating at 6 pm March 28th at 6 pm until 14th April 2020.

DO THE RESTRICTIONS LIMITING GATHERS TO 4 PERSONS APPLY TO ESSENTIAL BUSINESS AND SERVICE PROVIDERS?

No, it does not, put these service providers are required to ensure that their employees and customers are able to maintain a physical distance of at least six feet from another person.

WHAT STEPS SHOULD SERVICE PROVIDERS TAKE TO ENSURE THAT THEIR CUSTOMERS ARE ABLE TO MAINTAIN THE REQUIRED PHYSICAL DISTANCE?

  1. Assess the size of their premises and determine the number of people that may be permitted in the premises allowing for one person ever 30 sq feet.
  2. Limit the number of persons permitted to enter your establishment to ensure that persons can maintain a distance of 6 feet between themselves and the next person.
  3. Place markings at the checkout point to ensure that customers remain 6ft apart from the customers in front of them.
  4. Place markers outside your store to ensure that the customers who are waiting to enter your premises can maintain a distance of 6 feet between themselves and the next person.

Note: these marking etc. must be put in place by 6:00 p.m. on Sunday 29th March 2020

NB In order to enable the service Providers to put the markings etc, in place, the Hardware stores will be permitted to open today 28th March 2020 between the hours of 8: 00 a.m to 1:00 p.m.

  • The service providers are expected to put the necessary systems in place to control the numbers coming into their premises.
  • The Public is also asked to comply with the measures that have been put in place by the Service Providers and to ensure that they comply with the requirement to stay at least 6 feet away from the next person.

WHAT IS THE PENALTY FOR BREACHING THE CURFEW?

  • a fine of $500 or to imprisonment for three months OR
  • both a fine and imprisonment AND in the case of a second or subsequent offence to a fine of $1,000 or to imprisonment

ADDITIONAL PUBLIC HEALTH (COVID-19 CONTROL AND SUPPRESSION ORDER – NEW MEASURES

By way of additional information about the impact of the new order.

  • Please note that although MUL, DIGICEL, FLOW etc. are permitted to be open, this is only for the purposes of ensuring that the provision of those services continue. They are not opened for the purposes of enabling people to pay bills.  These service providers I understand have given the GOM the commitment that they will not during this period they will not disconnect customers for non-payment of bills.
  • Persons are now mandated to stay home (including the yard or garden). Full 24 hour a day curfew. This takes effect today 28th March 2020 at 6:00 p.m. 
  • Only One person from the household is permitted and, only once a day, to leave their home for the purpose of
    • shopping for necessities – Groceries, medicine etc.,
    • To conduct a banking or money transfer transaction
    • or to look after a Family member, a vulnerable person (E.g. an elderly friend or neighbor) or a pet. 
  • Physical activity is permitted, but only with members of your household, provided that you are not in group larger than three persons. This exercise must take place during the prescribed hours which are 5am – 8 am and 3pm – 6 pm. 
  • Essential service and essential business providers are permitted to be out of their place of residence for the purposes associated with their business or service. 
  • No one else is supposed to be out:
    • No yard workers. (Householders can cut their own yard if they wish)
    • No construction work
    • No other activity or work other than those provided for as essential business or service providers.
  • Fishermen and Farmers are permitted to be out. 
  • Only business permitted to have customers:
    • Grocery stores – whether wholesale or retail (selling groceries must be the primary business of the establishment)
    • Pharmacy
    • Banks
    • Gas station
    • Bakery
    • Doctor’s office
    • Money transfer business
    • Agricultural produce vendors

Number of People Allowed

These persons and business places may have more than 4 persons in their business places, but they must put measures in place to ensure that their customers and staff can practice the required physical distancing. 

They must

– ensure that not too many people are in the premises at one time given the size of the business place.

  • Put markers six feet part inside the business to indicate where customers must stand at the checkout point or in the queue
  • Put markers outside the premises, which are six feet part to indicate where customers must stand while waiting to enter the business place.
  • The public is being asked to abide with the measures that the business places have put in place to protect you as their customers and to protect themselves and their staff.

Hours of business

The Order outlines – hours during which service can be provided: But business owners can determine that they will provide service for a period shorter that the time frame allowed.

  • for a term of six months or to both such fine and imprisonment.
Puerto Rico on Coronavirus

Escape to Puerto Rico This Weekend, Virtually

Discover Puerto Rico invites you to dance salsa, make cocktails and cook authentic Puerto Rican cuisine this Friday through Sunday, March 27-29, 2020 to extend the joyful spirit of Puerto Rico’s culture, into your home

San Juan, Puerto Rico, March 24, 2020 – As we all come together to help stop the spread of COVID-19 and find ourselves in our homes seeking creative inspiration, Discover Puerto Rico, the Island’s Destination Marketing Organization (DMO), wants to extend the uplifting spirit of Puerto Rico’s rich culture by inviting people everywhere to escape to Puerto Rico this weekend, virtually. Day dreamers everywhere are invited to meet some of Puerto Rico’s best local talent and immerse themselves in the Island’s rich offerings by joining a salsa lesson with Tito Ortos and his partner Tamara Livolsi, choreographers to the stars including El Gran Combo, Gilberto Santa Rosa, and Víctor Manuelle on Friday, March 27, a cocktail making class with Roberto Berdecia, bartender and co-founder of the famous La Factoría on Saturday, March 28, and a cooking demo with Puerto Rican chef, Wilo Benet from Wilo Eatery & Bar on Sunday, March 29.

“We take great responsibility in helping stop the spread of COVID-19, so we’re not encouraging travelers to visit us right now as everyone needs to stay safe in their homes. Instead, we want to extend an important part of our culture – our salsa music and dancing, our mixology and our delicious cuisine – to uplift people during these challenging times. We encourage travelers to daydream about our Island now and consider a visit later, when the time is right. In the meantime, we’re excited to join them in their living rooms for this virtual getaway,” said Brad Dean, CEO of Discover Puerto Rico.

Salsa Lesson on Friday, March 27 from 8:00 p.m. ET – 9:00 p.m. ET

The salsa lesson will kick-off with a brief overview of basic salsa steps from notable salsa dancers, Tito and Tamara, and turn into a salsa dance party, so people can have a little fun from the comfort of their homes.

  • To participate, log into Zoom for free via https://zoom.us/j/293759126 (Meeting ID #293-759-126) at 8:00 p.m. ET. All you need is an internet connection and a webcam to show off your best moves to other participants. No experience is necessary.
  • Tito, the Director of the San Juan City Salsa Dance Program, participates with Tamara every year in congresses around the world and both work as judges for the World Salsa Summit, Euroson Latino and the World Salsa Championships.

Cocktail Making on Saturday, March 28 from 7:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. ET

Participants will not want to miss top bartender on the Island, Roberto Berdecia, co-owner of acclaimed La Factoría and Jungle Bird, serve up one of his favorites.

  • To participate, join via Instagram Live at @discoverpuertorico
  • La Factoría in Old San Juan, celebrating its fifth year as one of the World’s 50 Best Bars and featured in the music video of the hit song, Despacito, offers incredible cocktails harnessing local flavors, some of the best hospitality on the Island and an authentic atmosphere that seeps out of the distinguished bar walls.

Cooking Class on Sunday, March 29 from 7:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. ET

Chef Wilo Benet, who has redefined Puerto Rican cuisine, and in that process, has put the Island’s enchanting flavors on the global map, will walk participants through one of his favorite dishes you can easily whip up from home.

  • To participate, join via Instagram Live at @discoverpuertorico
  • Chef Benet defines his culinary style as contemporary global cuisine, a concept that combines traditional Puerto Rican ingredients with Japanese, Chinese, Thai, Spanish, Italian, French and Arab influences.

Puerto Rico’s music and gastronomy are at the center of the Island’s culture. Once it’s time to explore again, visitors will find no shortage of places on the island to discover, where they can put their new salsa dancing skills to the test or try some of Puerto Rico’s best cocktails and dishes.

Follow Discover Puerto Rico’s social channels on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook to keep up to date and for more information about Puerto Rico, visit DiscoverPuertoRico.com.

About Discover Puerto Rico 

Discover Puerto Rico is a newly established private, not for-profit Destination Marketing Organization (DMO) whose mission is to make Puerto Rico visible to the world as a premier travel destination. The DMO brings prosperity to the people of Puerto Rico by collaboratively promoting the Island’s diversity and uniqueness for leisure and business travel, and events. It is responsible for all global marketing, sales and promotion of the destination and works collaboratively with key local governmental and non-governmental players throughout Puerto Rico’s visitor economy and community at large, to empower economic growth. To discover all the beauty the Island has to offer, visit DiscoverPuertoRico.com.

Ingrid Rosa/ Account Supervisor, Travel & Economic Development / O  +1 646 935 4248

Download the March 15 statement.

March 15, 2020
Dear Industry Stakeholders,

Today, Hon. Wanda Vázquez-Garced, Governor of Puerto Rico, signed into effect Executive Order 2020¬023, which seeks to contain and manage the impact of COVID-19 in Puerto Rico.

The Executive Order can be found in the following link: tinyurl.com/OE-2020-23.

What follows is a guide on the applicability of the Executive Order on specific tourism operations.

Airports: Remain open for inbound and outbound travel. Adjustments in travel itineraries are at the discretion of each airline, in accordance with travel restrictions, as determined by the Government of the United States. Usual operations at the airport are not affected by the curfew. Passengers arriving or departing from the airports after curfew will be able to transit to and from the their respective destinations. Retail operations inside the airport will be subject to the same regulations as those in the rest of the island, allowing for only essential businesses to remain open. Restaurants and food service establishments will remain open but, limited to those that can offer their services by way of carry out or delivery. Said restaurants will be able to offer their services only in the above described manner, and will not host guests in their facilities.

Industry workforce: The Executive Order provides for employees that must transit, from their places of residence to their place of employment, after curfew to be able to do so. We strongly recommend employers provide a certification to staff whose shifts extend past curfew which may be presented to law enforcement personnel, should need be. These employees will abide by the dispositions of Section 3 of the Executive Order.

Cruise operations: The San Juan Bay is currently closed for cruise ship vessels.

Hotels: Remain open. Public areas and amenities in hotels, such as spas, pools, and recreational areas must remain closed. Room service can and should remain available for guests. Back office support to maintain essential hotel operations running are permissible. All hotels must take extraordinary measures and precautions to safeguard the health and safety of all guests, ensuring that adequate prevention and containment protocols are in place. Hotel management shall inform their employees that particular emphasis should be given to the dispositions of Section 3 of the Executive Order.

Casinos: Will remain closed from 6:00pm today until March 31, 2020.

Restaurants: Will remain open but, limited to those that can offer their services by way of drive thru, carry out, or delivery. Said restaurants will be able to offer their services only in the above described manner, and will not host guests in their facilities. Bars inside restaurants will be closed.

Restaurants inside hotels: Will remain open but, limited to those that can offer their services by way of carry out or delivery. Said restaurants will be able to offer their services only in the above described manner, and will not host guests in their facilities. Bars inside restaurants will be closed.

Attractions: All businesses should close with the exception of pharmacies, supermarkets, banks, or those related to the food or pharmaceutical industries. This applies to shopping malls, movie theaters, concert halls, casinos, bars, liquor stores, or any other place that facilitates citizens gatherings. Considering the aforementioned criteria, attractions must remain closed.

Tours: All businesses should close with the exception of pharmacies, supermarkets, banks, or those related to the food or pharmaceutical industries. This applies to shopping malls, movie theaters, concert halls, casinos, bars, liquor stores, or any other place that facilitates citizens gatherings. Considering the aforementioned criteria, tours must not operate.

Transportation providers: Transportation is an essential service. Uber and taxi drivers will be allowed to operate, subject to the limitations in Section 3 of the Executive Order.

Travel agencies: Storefront operations of travel agencies must remain closed. The Puerto Rico Tourism Company authorizes travel agents to be able to work remotely until further notice.

Sincerely,

Carla Campos
Executive Director

The current outbreak of the Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) continues to be an emerging and rapidly evolving situation. As such, the Puerto Rico Tourism Company is committed to providing guidelines for our industry’s response for the potential arrival of the virus to the Island.

Our guiding principles to manage this epidemic threat are to be precautionary, proactive, and readiness in order to rapidly respond to any possible situation on the island. The PRTC has prepared the enclosed Tourism Industry Preparedness report which follows the guidelines established by the Puerto Rico Department of Health and the Center for Disease Control (CDC), the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Worls Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC).

The report includes an update on the virus, travel advisories and the guidelines for appropriate prevention and preparedness, and response measures to reduce the risks associated with the COVID-19.
We are a people-driven industry and remain committed to making our visitors’ safety and well-being our first priority. Working as a team and in accordance to health organization guidelines and protocols we will be able to ensure Puerto Rico remains perceived as a safe and prepared destination to visit.

View report: https://files.constantcontact.com/d7e84275201/a9be3545-f9ee-4e22-b079-50a9f1bd3d47.pdf

Saint Lucia on Coronavirus

Website for details on St Lucia and COVId-19: https://www.stlucia.org/en_UK/covid-19/

23rd March 2020 – Airports Closed to Incoming Passengers

The Government of Saint Lucia announces the closure of Saint Lucia’s airports to all incoming commercial and private flights effective 11:59pm on Monday 23rd March 2020. All airports will be closed to all incoming passengers until Sunday April 5th 2020.

Aircraft facilitating departing passengers repatriating from Saint Lucia will be permitted. Air Cargo operations are permitted.

This is part of the Government’s efforts to contain the spread or the importation of new cases of COVID-19 (Coronavirus).

The Government of Saint Lucia has already closed schools, imposed travel restrictions and scaled back non-essential services in an effort contain the disease.

20th March, 2020  – Measures to address COVID-19:

The Government of Saint Lucia has announced the Implementation of Heightened Protocol and Social Distancing Regime with measures which come into effect from Monday 23rd March to Sunday April 5th 2020. The measures announced by Prime Minister Honourable Allen Chastanet are as follows:

 Partial scale down of all non-essential economic and social activities for a two-week period commencing from date of Monday 23rd March to Sunday April 5th 2020

ESSENTIAL SERVICES WHICH WILL CONTINUE INCLUDE:

 Emergency Services: Fire, Police as well as private security services.
 Border Control: Saint Lucia will strengthen, tighten and escalate port health protocols as part of its heightened protocols.
 Utilities (Wasco, Lucelec, telecoms),
 Sanitation collection and disposal,
 Supermarkets/minimarts/shops, bakeries, & pharmacies,
 Petrol/Gas stations,
 Air and Seaports operations (to facilitate cargo handling and US flights if they are still flying, to allow for return of nationals returning home)
 Limited public transportation services,
 Limited banking services,
 Trucking services related to movement and delivery of essential supplies and the food chain.
 Restaurants and Fast Food services only those who do take away/take out, delivery or drive through capabilities will be allowed to open
 News and Broadcast Services
 Manufacturing activities related to production of food, water and products of personal hygiene
 Providers of Cleaning Services

PLEASE NOTE: Those operations and business that can continue delivery of services under a working-from-home environment are encouraged to do so. Businesses which cannot operate with work-from-home will shut down for the stipulated time period.

Any queries or concerns with reference to services not listed should be directed to the National Emergency Management Organization (NEMO) Office at phone: 758-452-3802 or email [email protected].

Saint Lucia’s Tourism Sector Takes Proactive Approach Amid Concerns of the Global Impact of COVID-19

Castries, Saint Lucia (March 14, 2020) – The Ministry of Tourism and the Saint Lucia Tourism Authority (SLTA) recognizing the challenging environment of the travel and tourism industry, convened with the Board of Directors of the Saint Lucia Hotel and Tourism Association (SLHTA) on Friday March 13, 2020, to discuss the global impact of COVID-19 on the tourism sector.

Led by Tourism Minister – Honourable Dominic Fedee, The meeting focused on gaining first hand information on the overall status of the tourism industry over the next ninety days.

“This is part of our national strategy to make informed decisions to ensure the ultimate rebounding of the tourism industry. Considerations are already being undertaken for the recovery phase as we must ensure that Saint Lucia is positioned to regain its market share when the travel landscape changes.” Said Minister Fedee.

Approximately 50% of the accommodation sector and ancillary services were represented at Friday’s meeting.

President of the Saint Lucia Hotel & Tourism Association (SLHTA)-Karolin Troubetzkoy speaking on Friday’s meeting said; “The SLHTA is committed to collaborating closely with the SLTA and the Ministry of Tourism to safeguard the tourism industry and our economy but most importantly, safeguard the country and do what is best for our citizens and visitors alike in these difficult times.”

Similar dialog has taken place with travel trade partners, airlines and media.

Saint Lucia Ministry of Tourism, Information and Broadcasting, Culture and Creative Industries Statement on COVID-19

CASTRIES (March 5, 2020)- Saint Lucia’s Department of Health and Wellness is proactively working with all pertinent government agencies on island to execute The National Preparedness and Response Plan for COVID-19. To date, Saint Lucia has not reported any cases of the coronavirus.

The Department of Health and Wellness has noted an escalation in the number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 internationally as well as the spread to countries outside of China. Saint Lucia remains open for business and in an effort to restrict the likelihood of the introduction of COVID-19 into Saint Lucia, the Department of Health and Wellness on February 4, 2020 put in place travel restrictions on non-nationals with a travel history within the last 14 days from Mainland China; whether in- transit or originating.

Effective Wednesday, February 26, 2020, extension of travel restriction other jurisdictions also names Hong Kong, the Republic of Korea, Italy and Singapore Additionally, any Saint Lucian national returning to Saint Lucia with a travel history to any of the mentioned countries will be quarantined for 14 days.

The Department of Health and Wellness continues to work closely with the regional agencies in the management of the threat of Corona Virus Disease.
In the interim, the public is reminded to continue practicing the standard recommendations to prevent the spread of infection. These include;
• Regular hand washing with soap and water or alcohol based hand sanitizer where soap and water is not available.
• Cover mouth and nose with disposable tissues or clothing when coughing and sneezing.
• Avoid close contact with anyone showing symptoms of respiratory illness such as coughing and sneezing.
• Seek medical attention and share your travel history with your health care provider if you have symptoms suggestive of respiratory illness either during or after travel.

For more information, please contact the Office of the Chief Medical Officer or the Epidemiology Unit, at 468-5309/468-5317 respectively.

St Kitts and Nevis on Coronavirus

St. Kitts & Nevis Takes Continued Action Against COVID-19 – Update #9

Government Declares 24-Hour Curfew from 7:00pm Tonight
March 31 to 6:00am Friday, April 3, 2020

Basseterre, St. Kitts (March 31, 2020) – As of yesterday evening, March 30, 2020, the Prime Minister of St. Kitts & Nevis Dr. the Hon. Timothy Harris has declared that, effective as of 7:00 p.m. Tuesday, March 31, 2020, through 6:00 a.m. Friday, April 3, 2020 a 24-hour full curfew will be in effect.

Under the curfew, the current State of Emergency regulations have been repealed and a new regulation put into effect where no one except the Security Forces and other Security Personnel, the Health Care Officers, technical emergency officers of utilities including telecoms, and media personnel, will be allowed out of their residences. This is part of the Federal Government’s scaled up response to contain and control the COVID-19 virus and minimize harm to its people by restricting the spread of the virus from one person to the next.

As of yesterday, March 30, there were 8 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the Federation. This is an unprecedented time and the dangers that confront the Federation demand that Government takes serious actions to confront and overcome this pandemic. These strong measures are in place for the stated term and Government shall continue to evaluate and adapt required measures as necessary as the situation evolves.

At this time, we wish everyone and their families remain safe and healthy.

For more information on COVID-19, please visit www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019, www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html and/or http://carpha.org/What-We-Do/Public-Health/Novel-Coronavirus.

Government Declares a State of Emergency Tonight at 7:00pm for the Next 14 Days 

Basseterre, St. Kitts (March 28, 2020) – At the request of the Prime Minister Dr. the Hon. Timothy Harris, the Governor General of St. Kitts & Nevis has declared that, effective as of 7:00 p.m. tonight Saturday, March 28, 2020, a State of Emergency will be in effect. This will restrict the freedom of movement of all citizens and residents, who will be subject to a curfew between the hours of 7:00 p.m. and 5:00 a.m. each day for the next 14 days.  This is part of the Federal Government’s scaled up response to contain and control the COVID-19 virus and minimize harm to its people.

The Emergency Powers (COVID-19) Regulations require every person to remain confined to their place of residence, inclusive of their yard space, to avoid contact outside of their family except in stipulated circumstances such as essential travel to the doctor, grocery store, bank, credit union, money services, business, pharmacy or to refuel vehicles. The Regulations also require the closure of non-essential businesses and regulate the hours of opening for essential services.  For a complete listing of essential businesses, click here to read section 5 of the official Emergency Powers (COVID-19) Regulations document.

St. Kitts & Nevis has also imposed social and physical distancing protocols as part of the increased response. Businesses will be required to observe a physical distance of 6 feet between its customers inside and outside of their businesses. Following a meeting with the operators of the 3 bus lines and ferry operators, given the congestion in public transport vehicles and the potential for contagion, certain restrictions have been imposed to protect operators and their patrons of no more than 1 passenger per row.

Regarding the public service, all essential workers must report to work during the time of the State of Emergency. The Secretary of Cabinet will determine any other category required to report for duty.

To ensure that persons are faithfully complying with the curfew and other restrictions, strong penalties including fines of up to $5000 and/or a term of imprisonment of up to 6 months can be imposed on those who fail to comply with the Regulations.

While it is highly uncommon to restrict free movement, this is an unprecedented time and the dangers that confront the Federation demand that Government takes serious actions to confront and overcome this pandemic. These strong measures are in place for 14 days, in the first instance, and Government shall continue to evaluate and adapt the Regulations as necessary as the situation evolves.

As the result of actions by local experts, the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) and the World Health Organization (WHO), St. Kitts & Nevis was able to keep the virus offshore until as recently as March 25, 2020, when two Kittitian nationals arrived from New York and were tested positive for COVID-19.  In fact, St. Kitts & Nevis was the last place in the Americas to confirm positive cases of COVID-19. This is due to its “Life First” strategy by limiting cruise ships and taking precautionary measures with commercial airline passengers arriving from designated hot spots or displaying symptoms of respiratory illness, quarantining or refusing entry as warranted. Once these two cases of COVID-19 were imported into the Federation, the Federal Government needed to become more aggressive in its actions and this State of Emergency was declared.

The borders of St. Kitts & Nevis are closed from 11:59 p.m. on March 25 to April 7, 2020 to commercial air and sea vessels. Travellers are advised to contact their travel advisor, travel provider, hotel and/or airline for information about policies for rescheduling trips. Our hearts are with you, as we are all in this together. We look forward to once again welcoming you to the sun-kissed splendour of St. Kitts & Nevis. In the meantime, we ask all persons to stay informed about the latest news and developments relating to COVID-19 and to take all recommended precautions to stay safe and healthy.

For more information on COVID-19, please visit www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html and/or http://carpha.org/What-We-Do/Public-Health/Novel-Coronavirus. For more information about St. Kitts, visit www.stkittstourism.kn.

 

St. Kitts Music Festival 2020 Postponed

Basseterre, St. Kitts (March 26, 2020) – St. Kitts is postponing the 24th St. Kitts Music Festival, originally scheduled to be held June 24-28, 2020, to June 23-27, 2021 in light of the current global situation to protect its citizens, residents, visitors and the integrity of the Music Festival.

“The St. Kitts Music Festival is now achieving the goals that were established for the event to drive and support ‘heads in beds’ for our tourism industry in June,” said the Hon. Mr. Lindsay F.P. Grant, Minister of Tourism, International Trade, Industry, Commerce and Consumer Affairs. “The Music Festival has allowed us to promote our St. Kitts brand over the summer months and we are confident that it will remain a cornerstone of our annual marketing and branding activities in the years to come. It brings significant direct economic benefit that provides for our people year after year. However, after careful consideration we chose to postpone it until 2021.”

CEO of the St. Kitts Tourism Authority Ms. Racquel Brown added, “2019 was the second year in a row we saw a significant increase in air arrivals and attendance with systemwide air arrivals increasing 7% for June 2019 (15,499) as compared to June 2018 (14,490) and recording nearly 30,000 attendees over the 3-night event. Looking forward, we will ensure the marketing and promotion for the St. Kitts Music Festival 2021 produces an increase in air arrivals and increase brand awareness for St. Kitts for Summer 2021.”

“While it was a difficult decision to make, we have postponed the St. Kitts Music Festival to protect the health and safety of all visitors, citizens and residents as well as the integrity of the St. Kitts Music Festival brand,” said Damion Hobson, Chairman of the St. Kitts Music Festival. “We look forward to delivering another epic 3-nights of performances in 2021 and an ‘Experience like no other’.”

Anyone who has already purchased tickets online will be protected and their purchases will either remain valid or can be refunded. Originally scheduled to perform as part of the star-studded line-up for 2020 were renowned artists including Gladys Knight, Jimmy Cliff, Beres Hammond, Wizkid, Koffee and Chronixx, among others. For more information about the St. Kitts Music Festival, visit http://www.stkittsmusicfestival.com/.

About St. Kitts
Intoxicating natural beauty, sunny skies, warm waters, and sandy beaches combine to make St. Kitts one of the most seductive spots in the Caribbean. Located in the northern Leeward Islands, it offers a diverse tourism product developed from the destination’s natural beauty, cultural heritage and rich history. The island’s stunning variety of tourism attractions include hiking through the tropical rainforest, riding the scenic railway that connects the island’s former sugar plantations, visiting the Caribelle Batik factory, and touring Brimstone Hill Fortress National Park, which is an UNESCO World Heritage Site. Among the more traditional vacation pastimes available are water sports including catamaran cruises, golf, shopping, tennis, dining, gaming at St. Kitts’ exclusive casino or simply relaxing on the beach. For more information about St. Kitts, visit www.stkittstourism.kn.

St. Kitts & Nevis Closes Borders Tonight at 11:59pm – April 7, 2020 in Continued Action Against COVID-19

As of today, there are two confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the Federation. Two Kittitian nationals arriving from New York were tested and confirmed positive for the virus.

During this time, our foremost priority is to protect the health and safety of all citizens, visitors and residents. Thus, to help control the spread of the virus, the Government of the Federation of St. Kitts & Nevis is now taking the following actions to protect our borders, citizens and residents.

Effective today, March 25, 2020 at 11:59 pm, the Federation of St. Kitts & Nevis will be closing its borders to:

1) All commercial airline flights until April 7, 2020.

2) Medevac or medical emergency flights are an exception and will be allowed should the need arise.

3) International air cargo and cargo by seafaring vessels will be allowed in order to maintain connectivity that enables the Federation to import needed commodities such as food, fuel, medical supplies and equipment.

4) Nationals and Residents overseas who cannot return by the deadline will need to remain offshore until the border closing is lifted.

5) Immigration, Customs, Coast Guard and the Royal St. Christopher & Nevis Police Force, will be enforcing all border controls.

Travellers are advised to contact their travel advisor, travel provider, hotel and/or airline for information about and policies for rescheduling trips. Our hearts are with you, as we are all in this together. We look forward to again welcoming you to the sun-kissed splendour of St. Kitts & Nevis. In the meantime, we ask all persons to stay informed about the latest news and developments relating to COVID-19 and to take all recommended precautions to stay safe and healthy.

For more information on COVID-19, please visit www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019, www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html and/or http://carpha.org/What-We-Do/Public-Health/Novel-Coronavirus. For more information about St. Kitts, visit www.stkittstourism.kn.

 

 

St. Kitts & Nevis Closes Borders from Today at 11:59pm – April 7, 2020 in Continued Action Against COVID-19 – Update #6

Basseterre, St. Kitts (March 25, 2020) – To date, St. Kitts & Nevis has no confirmed cases of COVID-19. Together with the world, St. Kitts & Nevis is navigating the rapid changes taking place as a result of a shared global effort to control the spread of Coronavirus (COVID-19). During this time, our foremost priority is to protect the health and safety of all citizens, visitors and residents.

To help control the spread of the virus, the Government of the Federation of St. Kitts & Nevis is now taking the following actions to protect our borders, citizens and residents.

Effective today, March 25, 2020, at 11:59 pm, the Federation of St. Kitts & Nevis will be closing its borders to:

1) All commercial airline flights until April 7, 2020.

2) Medevac or medical emergency flights are an exception and will be allowed should the need arise.

3) International air cargo and cargo by seafaring vessels will be allowed in order to maintain connectivity that enables the Federation to import needed commodities such as food, fuel, medical supplies and equipment.

4) Nationals and Residents overseas who cannot return by the deadline will need to remain offshore until the border closing is lifted.

5) Immigration, Customs, Coast Guard and the Royal St. Christopher & Nevis Police Force, will be enforcing all border controls.

Travellers are advised to contact their travel advisor, travel provider, hotel and/or airline for information about fees and policies for rescheduling or cancelling trips.

We look forward to welcoming everyone to our twin-island destination once again when this time of uncertainty is behind us. In the meantime, we ask all persons to stay informed about the latest news and developments relating to COVID-19 and to take all recommended precautions including everyday preventative actions to help stem the spread of the virus, including frequent handwashing and practicing social distancing.

For more information on COVID-19, please visit www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019, www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html and/or http://carpha.org/What-We-Do/Public-Health/Novel-Coronavirus. For more information about St. Kitts, visit www.stkittstourism.kn.

St. Kitts & Nevis Continues Action  Against COVID-19  – Update #5

Basseterre, St. Kitts (March 23, 2020) – To date, St. Kitts & Nevis has no confirmed cases of COVID-19. Together with the world, St. Kitts & Nevis is navigating the rapid changes taking place as a result of a shared global effort to control the spread of Coronavirus (COVID-19). During this time, our foremost priority is to protect the health and safety of all citizens, visitors and residents. 

To help control the spread of the virus and, the Federal Government of St. Kitts & Nevis is now advising citizens and residents to avoid all non-essential travel to countries or jurisdictions where cases have been reported and where there is local/community transmission, including: China, Iran, Hong Kong, Singapore, South Korea, Japan, the European Union (EU), Switzerland, the United Kingdom (UK) and United States of America (USA), as well as the Dutch and French territories in the Caribbean.

International travellers from the aforementioned countries or jurisdictions will be refused entry, therefore they are strongly advised not to travel to St. Kitts & Nevis at this time. Visitors, nationals and legal residents of St. Kitts & Nevis, Caribbean Single Market Economy (CSME) Freedom of Movement certificate holders and work permit holders, arriving from any destination regardless of their point of origin will be subject to an advanced screening at the port of entry and a mandatory quarantine period of no less than 14-days. Please note the following:

  1. For the 14-day mandatory quarantine, movement will be restricted to a Government designated facility.
  2. Persons in quarantine will receive health checks by the Ministry of Health’s designated quarantine officials on a daily basis.
  3. Persons may be refused entry.
  4. Any person found in breach of the terms of his / her quarantine shall be liable on summary conviction to the penalties as outlined in the Public Health Quarantine Regulations (SRO No. 2 of 2020). Travellers are advised to contact their hotel in advance of arrival to request information about fees and policies if travellers choose to postpone or cancel their trip.

For anyone choosing to forgo travel during this uncertain time, please know that we remain committed to delivering an outstanding experience of our twin-island destination and look forward to the time when this situation is behind us. In the meantime, we ask all persons to stay informed about the latest news and developments relating to COVID-19 and to take all recommended precautions including everyday preventative actions to help stem the spread of the virus, including frequent handwashing and practicing social distancing.

For more information on COVID-19, please visit www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019, www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html and/or http://carpha.org/What-We-Do/Public-Health/Novel-Coronavirus. For more information about St. Kitts, visit www.stkittstourism.kn.

St. Kitts & Nevis Takes Further Action Against COVID-19 – Update #4

Basseterre, St. Kitts (March 16, 2020) – Together with the world, St. Kitts & Nevis is navigating the rapid changes taking place as a result of a shared global effort to control the spread of Coronavirus (COVID-19). During this time, our foremost priority is to protect the health and safety of all citizens, visitors and residents.

To date, St. Kitts & Nevis still has no confirmed cases of COVID-19. However, to help control the spread of the virus and, the Federal Government of St. Kitts & Nevis has issued COVID-19 travel advisories for visitors, citizens and residents arriving in from China, Italy, Iran, Hong Kong, Singapore, South Korea, Japan, the United Kingdom (UK), Ireland, France, Germany and Spain.

Air passengers travelling to/from any of the above listed destinations within the last 14 days are asked to note travel restrictions and the 14-day mandatory quarantine period that is enforced for Nationals, Residents and Visitors. Persons who travel to St. Kitts & Nevis from these destinations will be subject to screening at the port of entry and a mandatory 14-day quarantine period, wherein their movements will be restricted to a designated facility, for air passengers, most likely their hotel. Air travellers are advised to contact their hotel in advance of arrival to determine if the hotel can accommodate a quarantine and to request information about fees and policies if travellers choose to postpone or cancel their trip.

For anyone choosing to forgo travel during this uncertain time, please know that we remain committed to delivering an outstanding experience of our twin-island destination and look forward to the time when this situation is behind us. In the meantime, we ask all persons to stay informed about the latest news and developments relating to COVID-19 and to take all recommended precautions including everyday preventative actions to help stem the spread of the virus. These include frequent handwashing with soap and water or 60% alcohol-based hand sanitizers, frequent disinfection of surfaces, practicing social distancing and avoiding close contact with people who exhibit signs of respiratory illness.

For more information on COVID-19, please visit www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019, www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html and/or http://carpha.org/What-We-Do/Public-Health/Novel-Coronavirus. For more information about St. Kitts, visit www.stkittstourism.kn.

St. Kitts & Nevis Takes Further Action Against COVID-19 – Update #3

Basseterre, St. Kitts (March 14, 2020) – To date, St. Kitts & Nevis still has no confirmed cases of COVID-19. However, in response to the rapid international spread of the disease and the fact the (a) the World Health Organisation (WHO) has declared that the virus has now become a pandemic and (b) several CARICOM member states have now reported cases – all of which have been imported into the region, The Federal Government of St. Kitts and Nevis announces the following:

• At St. Kitts’ Robert L. Bradshaw International Airport, all incoming air passengers to the Federation will continue mandatory completion of question #17 of the Customs/Immigration Form, which requires a listing of “countries visited during last six weeks.”

o Travel advisories remain in effect for any and all incoming passengers who have travelled to or from any of the following countries within the last six (6) weeks prior to arrival in the Federation. Those travellers will continue to be asked to provide travel history, history of exposure to the virus and contact information: China, Italy, Iran, Hong Kong, Singapore, South Korea and Japan

o Travel advisories have now been issued for The United Kingdom (UK), France, Germany and Spain.

o Passengers traveling to/from these destinations within the last 14 days are asked not to travel to St. Kitts & Nevis at this time. Persons who do travel to St. Kitts & Nevis from these destinations will be subject to a mandatory 14-day quarantine period following screening at the port of entry. Such quarantine of passengers means that their movements will be confined to a designated facility.

o The Federal Government advises all citizens and legal residents returning from any of the aforementioned countries that they too will be placed on a mandatory 14-day self-quarantine regimen, wherein their movements will be restricted.

o The Federal Government reserves the right to screen any individual arriving into the Federation, particularly during this WHO declared pandemic. This advisory remains in effect for citizens, residents and travelers until further notice and as previously stated, the Federal Government reserves the right to amend its travel advisories to include other countries.

• At the cruise port, inspectors from the Environmental Health Department continue to board each vessel that docks to review the passenger travel manifest and all medical reports for any passengers exhibiting flu-like symptoms. Any passenger displaying such symptoms is not permitted to disembark.

St. Kitts & Nevis is complying with International Health Regulations and reporting to the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) and the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) / the World Health Organization (WHO) as appropriate. Following the WHO’s declaration on March 11, 2020 that the global spread of COVID-19 constitutes a Pandemic, the Government of St. Kitts and Nevis advises citizens and residents to restrict travel to the aforementioned destinations until the WHO gives the all clear in relation to COVID-19.

The Ministry of Health is working closely with the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) and all appropriate government agencies to execute national disaster preparedness and response plans so as to prevent, monitor and manage the spread of the virus if and when a national or visitor tests positive for the virus. The Disaster Mitigation Council is in place to handle the response to the disease and the Ministry of Health has conducted training exercises with frontline workers including police and immigrations and customs officers.

A destination-wide awareness and education campaign is being implemented within schools, the workplace and communities to remind the public of everyday preventative actions including basic hygiene best practices to help stem the spread of the virus. These include frequent handwashing with soap and water or 60% alcohol-based hand sanitizers, frequent disinfection of surfaces and avoiding close contact with people who exhibit signs of respiratory illness. The Federal Ministry of Health and the Government of St. Kitts & Nevis advises citizens
to remain clam, follow all of the advisories that have been issued, and rely only on official sources of information on COVID-19 rather than subjecting themselves to fear and propaganda.

For more information on COVID-19, please visit www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019, www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html and/or http://carpha.org/What-We-Do/Public-Health/Novel-Coronavirus.

For more information about St. Kitts, visit www.stkittstourism.kn.

Nevis Takes Preventive Action to Prevent COVID-19 Infection

Charlestown, Nevis, March 12, 2020 – In light of the global impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19), the Nevis Ministry of Health wishes to allay fears and assure the Nevisian public and travelers to Nevis that it is taking the threat of the coronavirus (COVID-19) very seriously.

There are currently no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the Federation of St. Kitts and Nevis and the government is taking all necessary steps to increase surveillance at ports of entry, to train and equip healthcare workers, and to educate the general public about protecting themselves, their families and the wider Nevisian community by preventing infection. The Ministry will further engage in educational sessions and discussions with schools, hotels, businesses and other organizations throughout the island.

“Tourists should know that although there are no cases of coronavirus on Nevis, the government and the tourism stakeholders here are all instituting practices recommended by the World Health Organization and the Center, Disease Control, the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) and the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO),” says Jadine Yarde, CEO of the Nevis Tourism Authority (NTA). “We want to assure tourists that we are maximizing our natural resources to fortify our immune systems and taking swift actions to respond to anything that may arise. We are all in this together and the health of our citizens and the visitors to this beautiful island is our paramount concern.”

As Nevis moves towards readiness and response, the government continues to encourage and emphasize the following:

  • The practice of good hand hygiene through frequent and thorough hand-washing, and cough etiquette in order to reduce the risk of transmission of respiratory viruses
  • Social distancing by avoiding close contact with people suffering from acute respiratory infections and remaining at home if a person exhibits flu like symptoms
  • Self-reporting, with travelers coming/returning to the Federation being required to self-report if they feel they might have been exposed to COVID-19 or feel ill
  • Calling ahead to your physician or health institution stating your symptoms and any travel history to allow for preparation at the office/institution prior to your visit.

All travelers with questions are encouraged to consult the World Health Organization’s website: https://www.who.int/health-topics/coronavirus or to contact the Nevis Tourism Authority, USA Tel 1.407.287.5204, Canada 1.403.770.6697 or our website  www.nevisisland.com  and on Facebook – Nevis Naturally.

Media Contact: Inez Freund / [email protected]

St. Kitts & Nevis Takes Preventative Action Against Coronavirus – Update #2 

Basseterre, St. Kitts (March 10, 2020) – To date, there have been no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in St. Kitts & Nevis. However, in response to the COVID-19 global outbreak and the subsequent international spread of the disease, the destination has strengthened surveillance and pre-emptive healthcare procedures at its air and seaports as well as throughout the Federation. The health system has moved to detect, contain and manage the situation in the event the virus reaches the Federation.

• At St. Kitts’ Robert L. Bradshaw International Airport, all incoming air passengers to the Federation must at all times complete question #17 of the Customs/Immigration Form, which requires a listing of “countries visited during last six weeks.”
o Any and all incoming passengers who have traveled to or from any of the following countries within the last six (6) weeks prior to arrival in the Federation will be asked to provide travel history, history of exposure to the virus and contact information: China, Italy, Iran, Hong Kong, Singapore, South Korea and Japan
o Persons traveling to/from these destinations within the last 14 days are asked not to travel to St. Kitts & Nevis. Persons who do travel to St. Kitts & Nevis from these destinations will be subject to screening at the ports of entry and may be monitored by the public health team or quarantined at home or at a designated facility based on risk assessment. This advisory remains in effect for citizens, residents and travelers until further notice.

• At the cruise port, inspectors from the Environmental Health Department board each vessel that docks to review the passenger travel manifest and all medical reports for any passengers exhibiting flu-like symptoms. Any passenger displaying such symptoms is not permitted to disembark.

• The Federation of St. Kitts & Nevis reserves the right to deny entry to any non-Nationals who have visited the countries listed above within the incubation period of 14 days. Nationals and/or residents who have visited those countries within the 14-day incubation period will be required to go through the established screening process. In the interest of public health and safety, the Federation also reserves the right to amend its travel advisories to include other countries.

St. Kitts & Nevis is complying with International Health Regulations and reporting to the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) and the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) / the World Health Organization (WHO) as appropriate. Following the WHO’s declaration on January 30th, 2020 that the outbreak of the Coronavirus constitutes a Public Health Emergency of International Concern, the Government of St. Kitts and Nevis advises citizens and residents to restrict travel to the aforementioned destinations until the WHO gives the all clear in relation to the COVID-19.

The Ministry of Health is working closely with the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) and all appropriate government agencies to execute national disaster preparedness and response plans so as to prevent, monitor and manage the spread of the virus if and when a national or visitor tests positive for the virus. The Disaster Mitigation Council is in place to handle the response to the disease and the Ministry of Health has conducted training exercises with frontline workers including police and immigrations and customs officers.

A destination-wide awareness and education campaign is being implemented within schools, the workplace and communities to remind the public of everyday preventative actions such as including basic hygiene best practices to help stem the spread of the virus. These include frequent handwashing with soap and water or 60% alcohol-based hand sanitizers, frequent disinfection of surfaces and avoiding close contact with people who exhibit signs of respiratory illness.

For more information on COVID-19, please visit www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019, www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html and/or http://carpha.org/What-We-Do/Public-Health/Novel-Coronavirus.

For more information about St. Kitts, visit www.stkittstourism.kn.

St. Kitts & Nevis Takes Preventative Action Against Coronavirus

Basseterre, St. Kitts (March 5, 2020) – To date, there have been no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in St. Kitts & Nevis. However, in response to the COVID-19 global outbreak and the subsequent international spread of the disease, the destination has strengthened surveillance and pre-emptive healthcare procedures at its air and seaports as well as throughout the Federation. The health system has moved to detect, contain and manage the situation in the event the virus reaches the Federation.

• At St. Kitts’ Robert L. Bradshaw International Airport, all incoming air passengers to the Federation must at all times complete question #17 of the Customs/Immigration Form, which requires a listing of “countries visited during last six weeks.”
• At the cruise port, inspectors from the Environmental Health Department board each vessel that docks to review the passenger travel manifest and all medical reports for any passengers exhibiting flu-like symptoms. Any passenger displaying such symptoms is not permitted to disembark.
• Any and all incoming passengers who have traveled to or from any of the following countries within the last 14 days will be asked to provide travel history, history of exposure to the virus and contact information: China, Hong Kong, Singapore, South Korea, Italy, Japan and Iran.
• Persons traveling to/from these destinations within the last 14 days are asked not to travel to St. Kitts & Nevis. Persons who do travel to St. Kitts & Nevis from these destinations will be subject to screening at the ports of entry and may be monitored by the public health team or quarantined at home or at a designated facility based on risk assessment.
• The Federation of St. Kitts & Nevis reserves the right to deny entry to any non-Nationals who have visited the countries listed above within the incubation period of 14 days. Nationals and/or residents who have visited those countries within the 14-day incubation period will be required to go through the established screening process.
St. Kitts & Nevis is complying with International Health Regulations and reporting to the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) and the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) / the World Health Organization (WHO) as appropriate. Following the WHO’s declaration on January 30th, 2020 that the outbreak of the Coronavirus constitutes a Public Health Emergency of International Concern, the Government of St. Kitts and Nevis advises citizens and residents to restrict travel to the aforementioned destinations until the WHO gives the all clear in relation to the COVID-19.

The Ministry of Health is working closely with the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) and all appropriate government agencies to execute national disaster preparedness and response plans so as to prevent, monitor and manage the spread of the virus if and when a national or visitor tests positive for the virus . The Disaster Mitigation Council is in place to handle the response to the disease and the Ministry of Health has conducted training exercises with frontline workers including police and immigrations and customs officers.

A destination-wide awareness and education campaign is being implemented within schools, the workplace and communities to remind the public of everyday preventative actions such as including basic hygiene best practices to help stem the spread of the virus. These include frequent handwashing with soap and water or 60% alcohol-based hand sanitizers, frequent disinfection of surfaces and avoiding close contact with people who exhibit signs of respiratory illness.

For more information on COVID-19, please visit www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019, www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html and/or http://carpha.org/What-We-Do/Public-Health/Novel-Coronavirus.

For more information about St. Kitts, visit www.stkittstourism.kn.

St Maarten on Coronavirus

Destination Sint Maarten – Update – Tuesday, March 31, 2020

GREAT BAY, Sint Maarten (DCOMM) – Sint Maarten is in a partial lockdown and therefore measures taken is part of the Government’s preparedness, response and mitigation efforts in connection with the COVID-19 global pandemic.

These are extraordinary times.  Government has a responsibility to protect the safety and health of the people of Sint Maarten.

Travel Document Required to Move Around

In a meeting of the Emergency Operations Center (EOC) held on  March 29, 2020, on increasing measures to ensure the safety and security of the population in this COVID-19 period, the Prime Minister took several decisions in relation to the movement of persons in and around Sint Maarten and increased controls in movement across the border in collaboration with French Saint-Martin counterparts.

The Government of Sint Maarten will be increasing its restrictions as per article 1 of the General Police Ordinance, which allows for special measures in extraordinary circumstances. This regulation will restrict movement and authorize the police to enforce the request the Prime Minister made to the nation on Friday, March 27, to STAY AT HOME, and to practice extreme social distancing, and when necessary to be out for essential services only.

This regulation will require the citizens to carry a document on them, signed by their employer, declaring the need for them to travel to work, or one which describes which essential service they are traveling to or for. This document will be available for download by the citizens of Sint Maarten on Government’s website www.sintmaartengov.org/coronavirus.

Joint Border Controls to Continue

Also, in collaboration with French Saint-Martin counterparts, the Prefet Sylvie Feucher, the Gendarmes, and the Sint Maarten Police Department, will continue to patrol the borders in order to restrict any non-essential movement across borders as well. This is in an effort to reduce the possibility of the spread of the COVID-19 virus. As such, all residents of Sint Maarten/Saint-Martin needing to cross the border will only be able to do so for either work purposes or health purposes and will be required to carry a new document that will be available on both Government’s website for download.

Licensed Restaurants/Street Vendors Banned from Selling Alcohol

Effective Monday, March 30, 2020, all licensed restaurants including street vendors will only be able to sell/deliver food. It is strictly forbidden to sell alcoholic beverages at these establishments. This is in order to minimize the chance of persons gathering at these establishments in a social atmosphere where proper social distancing of 1,5 – 2 meters is observed. The business closures at 6:00 PM each day and business closures on Sundays will remain in effect.

Curfew from 8.00PM to 6.00AM

As of Monday, March 30, 2020, a curfew is in place from 8:00 PM until 6:00 AM the following morning. This curfew is implemented in order to restrict movement except for emergencies during these hours and has been added in order to ensure that no unnecessary movement occurs during the established business closure times.

Persons traveling to essential work, before and after the established curfew (6:00 AM and after 8:00 PM) will be exempted from this measure. For example, those persons working night shifts and early morning shifts, including security guards, nurses, radio hosts, etc.

For official information and updates visit the Government website: www.sintmaartengov.org/coronavirus or its Facebook Page: Facebook.com/SXMGOV

Department of Communications (DCOMM), Philipsburg, Sint Maarten D.W.I. Tel. + 721 543-1162, 542-4119, Fax: 543-1169; Email: [email protected]; Website: www.sintmaartengov.org

For Immediate Release: Wednesday, March 25, 2020

Destination Sint Maarten – Update

GREAT BAY, Sint Maarten (DCOMM) – These are extraordinary times.  Government has a responsibility to protect the safety and health of the people of Sint Maarten.

The country is in a partial lockdown and therefore measures taken is part of the Government of Sint Maarten’s preparedness, response and mitigation in connection with the COVID-19 global pandemic.

Travel Restrictions

Air Travel

As of Sunday, March 22nd, 2020 at 11:59 PM, was the last day for the residents (passengers) of Sint Maarten to travel back to the country for the next two weeks.

Therefore, no airlines will be bringing in residents or persons during the next two weeks. The only flights that you will see coming into the airport would be cargo flights or flights that are coming in to pick up passengers to return them to their home countries.

Ships and Other Maritime Craft

The travel restrictions for shippers and mariners went into effect as of March 24th 11:59pm American Standard Time. After this date NO Foreign Vessels (exemptions applied) will be allowed in the territorial waters of Sint Maarten until further notice.

This includes but is not limited to; Pleasure vessels, Fishing vessels, Passenger Vessels, Huckster boats, Mega Yachts, Sailing Yachts, Catamarans, etc.

Applicable Exemptions are as follows:

  1. Locally registered leisure vessels are permitted to operate in the waters of Sint Maarten providing that there are four (4) or less persons (including captain) on board.
  2. Fishing vessels from Saba and St. Eustatius are allowed entry into the territorial waters of Sint Maarten BUT should contact the Immigration Department prior to arrival.
  3. Other trade between Sint Maarten, SABA and St. Eustatius that takes place via water transport will be evaluated on a case by case basis.
  4. Large Cargo vessels, Bulk carriers, Bunker Barges/-vessels will be allowed only if the relevant procedures are followed and approval is given by the pertinent authorities who will closely monitor these activities to ensure their adherence.
  5. Bunkering and or provisioning may ONLY be permitted for vessels of 500GT and larger that are passing through Sint Maarten on-route to another destination. This service will only be made available at Port St. Maarten where each request will be evaluated on a case by case basis.  At no time are crew or captain allowed to leave the vessel. Bunkering and or provisioning will NOT be allowed to take place at the other marinas or docking locations on island unless the vessel is already docked at a facility that provides such. ‘Social Distancing’ should always be adhered to.
  6. Locally registered passenger vessels including ferries may be used by the company and or owners for personal use only and cease all commercial activities until further notice.

Measures

The following measures have been taken in order to contain the spread of the coronavirus COVID-19.

Therefore, the following measures have been implemented in relation to business closures, which went into effect on Monday, March 23, 2020.

Businesses that are allowed to remain open to the public:

o       Hotels and guest houses, including on-site amenities;

o       Yachting agents;

o       Emergency, Paramedic & Medical laboratory services;

o       Medical practitioners & Dental clinics (for emergencies services);

o       Pharmacies & Pharmaceutical suppliers.

o       Gas stations and Suppliers of fuel (ULG, Diesel etc.) & LPG Distributors (cooking gas);

o       Banks;

o       Insurance companies, limited to back office administration and online/ mobile services;

o       Hardware stores;

o       Shipping & Cargo companies;

o       Grocery stores;

o       Restaurants and food vendors (take-out and delivery services only);

o       Bakeries (take-out and delivery services only);

o       Essential Gov’t services, incl. telecommunication, judicial, utilities and postal services.

o       Notarial services

o       Funeral services

o       Media outlets

o       Cleaning services and garbage collection

o       Laundry services

o       Public transportation operators;

o       Construction of Social Projects may also continue

All other businesses must be closed to the public but may offer online/mobile ordering and delivery services to clients.

  1. All businesses must be closed on Sundays and holidays, with the exception of pharmacies, retailers of cooking gas, gas stations and hotels/ guesthouses, incl. on-site amenities catered to guests only.
  2. Businesses that are allowed to open, must be closed by 6.00 pm on all other days (Mon-Sat), with the exception of hotels/ guesthouses, which may maintain their regular operating hours.

The above-mentioned operating hours also applies to businesses with permits to open for extended hours or 24 hours.

Beach Activities

Beaches will remain open and accessible to the public; however, no beach parties/ gatherings are allowed. Beach parties/ gatherings are considered gatherings of more than five (5) persons in one group.  Furthermore, the renting of chairs, umbrellas, water sports equipment and the provision of other beach activities is prohibited until further notice.

For official information and updates visit the Government website: www.sintmaartengov.org/coronavirus or its Facebook Page: Facebook.com/SXMGOV

Roddy Heyliger (Email: [email protected]; +1 721 520-4217)

Department of Communications (DCOMM), Sint Maarten

St. Maarten update on COVID-19

The St. Maarten Tourism Bureau would like to inform travelers of the latest developments on island pertaining to the COVID-19, as well as the recently imposed travel restrictions by Government of Sint Maarten.

St. Maarten has recorded its first positive COVID-19 case. The individual has been in quarantine and is self-isolating properly. Contact tracing has also been carried out.

As of Tuesday March 17th, 2020 at 11.59 PM new travel restrictions went into effect and are as follows:

  • Passengers are not allowed to enter St. Maarten. 
  • This does not apply to residents of St. Maarten. They must hold a proof of residence, which can be a St. Maarten driving license, St. Maarten ID card or a St. Maarten registration document. 
  • This does NOT apply to airline crew.

 Residents of St. Maarten must undergo a mandatory self-quarantine for 14 days. 

  • Airline crew that are overnighting must undergo a mandatory self-quarantine while on the island. 
  • Essential Flights from Saba, Sint Eustatius and Curacao are allowed 
  • Medical emergency flights are allowed 
  • This does not apply to passengers who are traveling to St. Maarten at the invitation of the Government of St. Maarten as technical or medical -specialists and -assistants. 
  • All residents of St. Maarten and crew members arriving on St. Maarten are required to mandatory self-isolate for 14 days and will be monitored by the department of Public Health.

Cruise, Yachting and pleasure craft calls are suspended to the island until further notice.

If you are scheduled to travel to St. Maarten after March 18th 2020, please contact your airline or travel service provider immediately to modify your booking.

If you are currently on St. Maarten, please contact your airline, travel service provider and/or embassy immediately for the most recent updates and repatriation procedures.

Non-essential services and businesses were ordered to cease operations to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 which went into affect on Wednesday March 18th, 2020 as of 12:00 AM for a duration of 2 weeks/14 days.

Social Distancing is also being strongly promoted. The Government of Sint Maarten is strongly urging persons to avoid social gathering in groups where they are unable to keep a distance of at least one meter from one another. All institutions, businesses, organizations, religious services and other entities is urged to adhere to these recommended advices in order to prevent the spread of COVID-19. The Ministerial regulation to ensure that this is enforceable is being finalized.

We are currently in extraordinary times, and with the uncertainty of COVID-19, there is no date set when travel restrictions will be lifted. We encourage you to stay healthy and remain inspired to travel to St. Maarten as soon as this is possible again.

Useful links and telephone numbers

Princess Juliana International Airport

For the latest airline scheduling we advise you to visit  www.sxmairport.com

The Ministry of Public Health, Social Development and Labor

If you are displaying symptoms of COVID-19 or would like to speak to someone about this topic please refer to the below contact details:

Collective Prevention Services (CPS)

Tel: +1721 520 4523, +1721 520-1348 or +1721 520 5283

Hotline during business hours: 914

Email: [email protected]

Government of Sint Maarten

For more information and updates relating to COVID-19 and the actions of Government of Sint Maarten please visit www.sintmaartengov.org/coronavirus

Contact us:

St. Maarten Tourism Bureau / Juancho Yrausquin Blvd # 6 / Philipsburg, St. Maarten / Tel : + 1 (721) 549 0200 / Email: [email protected]

 

Travel Restrictions to the Destination Stepped-up from 14 to 21 Days. EOC to Meet Thursday and MPS to be Informed

The travel restrictions which were issued by the Government of Sint Maarten have now been increased from 14 to 21-days, Prime Minister Silveria Jacobs disclosed on Wednesday.

The Emergency Operations Center (EOC) will be meeting on Thursday and a meeting will be held with Members of Parliament (MPs) to provide them with an update on national preparations for COVID-19.

Jacobs said the World Health Organization (WHO) on Wednesday declared that the coronavirus COVID-19 is now an international pandemic.  Such a declaration calls on all countries to speed up their response and containment measures and to be prepared to take any additional measures that are required to protect public health.

The Government continues to work closely with the Government of French Saint-Martin and Kingdom counterparts in order to prepare and plan to mitigate the spread.

Prime Minister Jacobs added that the business community as well as Government will have to look at ways of allowing workers to work remotely from home, especially for persons who have traveled to COVID-19 hotspots including those who are not mentioned in the country’s travel restriction lists.

Persons should self- isolate for 14-days at home; contact their family physician (GP) and provide a list of their flu-like symptoms to their GP if they develop any.  The family physician will determine if the Collective Prevention Services (CPS) should be contacted. For more information you can call the 914-hot line during business hours.

Children with flu-like symptoms should remain home; self-isolation is the best way to contain communicable diseases.  Special attention should be paid to senior citizens, especially those with pre-existing health (respiratory) conditions.

Passengers and airline crew who have been in China (People’s Republic), Hong Kong (SAR China), Iran, Italy, Japan, Korea (Rep.), Macao (SAR China) or Singapore in the past 21 days, are not allowed to transit or enter Sint Maarten.

This does not apply to nationals of the Kingdom of the Netherlands (being from Aruba, Bonaire, Curacao, Netherlands, St. Eustatius, Saba and Sint Maarten); and this does not apply to residents of Sint Maarten.

All passengers must fill in the embarkation card in order to know where the passengers are coming from before the aircraft/ship arrives in Sint Maarten.

There are zero cases of suspected or confirmed COVID-19 on Dutch Sint Maarten at this time.  Our screening processes at our ports of entry have been stepped up in cooperation with the airlines who are also following their own screening protocols based on World Health Organization (WHO) recommendations.

There is no reason to panic; stay calm and take preventative hygiene measures at home, on the job, in school that have been promoted by the Ministry of Public Health for the past several weeks via the Government’s Department of Communication.

Persons should refrain from hugging and touching each other when visiting family or friends.  We have to get back to the ‘No touch rule’ in order to protect ourselves at this point in time with the global COVID-19 outbreak.

The Government continues to work diligently to increase capacity within the public health sector, but this will take some time.

Listen to the Government Radio station – 107.9FM – for official information, statements and news updates or visit the Government website: www.sintmaartengov.org/coronavirus or and Facebook Page: Facebook.com/SXMGOV

 

SXM Airport takes Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) on with dynamic information session for staff and internal stakeholders

Simpson Bay, St. Maarten (Friday, March 06, 2020) – SXM Airport is proactively working with all the relevant government agencies on St. Maarten to strategically execute the required responses and awareness actions, as it relates to the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19).The initiative comes following the announcement from the World Health Organization (WHO) that declared the outbreak constitutes a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC). The novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, was first reported in China on December 2019.

Meanwhile, the Airport has since initiated its’ infectious disease awareness campaign, through a Contingency Plan to determine the significant safeguards for the situation and have already accelerated the efforts thus far.

Gerald Baptiste of the SXM Airport Rescue and Firefighting Department (R&FF) and Eva Lista – De Weever, Department Head of the Collective Prevention Services (CPS) were amongst the primary speakers at the information session on the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19), which was appropriately entitled, “Awareness and Protection” at the Princess Juliana International Airport (SXM). The open walk-in session was held with the airport community at the Departure Hall on Tuesday, March 3, 2020. The stakeholders included airlines and handlers, concessionaires, Immigration, Customs, ground handling workers, cargo operators, VIP’s, car rental operators and more.

Dr. Sonia Swanston – Meade, the assigned company doctor of the Airport also served as a speaker and further disclosed the symptoms of the infectious disease and the healthy practices to follow while at the workplace or traveling via the airport. CPS presented the case definition and listed the necessary prevention measures for yourself and those around you. Another point of dialogue included the topic “How to effectively communicate your symptoms to a physician?”

“We were well received by the airport’s staff and stakeholders that took the time out to attend the airport’s information session. All the related questions posed were valid and in line with the worldwide concerns of the outbreak. It was a wonderful experience to collaborate with other local health practitioners and emergency departments and CPS is open to more joint efforts, to better inform the population about the disease. I hope the takeaway message is that the Ministry of Public Health is doing what we can to ensure the safety of all residents and visitors,” summarized the Department Head of the Collective Preventive Services, Eva Lista – De Weever.

St Martin on Coronavirus

PRESS RELEASE MARCH 30TH 2020

The entire world is going through serious turmoil with an unprecedented health crisis.

Every country is impacted.

Patience and confinement seem to be the only appropriate response.

As the President of the French Republic, E. Macron stated when solemnly addressing the nation, “The world is at war against an invisible enemy”.

Given this context we are sharing the latest updates for St-Martin.

A certain number of restrictive measures have been taken at all points of entries and for public and private establishments.

Airports

Travel restrictions have been imposed by the authorities.

At Princess Juliana International Airport, Sunday March 22nd was the last day for residents (passengers) of Sint-Maarten/Saint-Martin to travel back to the island until April 15th (subject to change).

Only cargo flights will be authorized to land.

For further information, please follow the links below.

Facebook : Facebook.com/SXMGOV

Website : sintmaartengov.org/coronavirus

An updated flight schedule is available on the airport’s Facebook page and website.

Facebook : Princess Juliana International Airport

Website : sxmairport.com/news-press.php

At Grand Case Airport

By decree, and in order to maintain regional territorial links, commercial flights are resumed since March 23rd by Air Antilles Express.

Flights will be operated by Twin Otter 17-seater aircraft on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.

Flights are reserved to:

  • Someone accompanying a very sick person
  • Those that need urgent surgery, chemotherapy, dialysis…
  • Those traveling for professional reasons in link with the crisis.

Yet, they will have to show proof of residency on their travel documents.

Also, they will have to produce two documents proving the exactitude of their motivation to travel.

Air Caraïbes has ceased all flights and activity until further notice.

For further information please refer to:

Facebook: Aeroport Saint Martin Grand Case

Website: saintmartin-airport.com

Website: [email protected]

Inter-island ferries

The rotations between Saint-Martin and the island of Anguilla are suspended until further notice from the Ferry Station of Marigot.

There is one rotation per day between Saint-Martin and Saint-Barthelemy,

Facebook: Voyager St Barth

Marina fort louis

The Fort Louis Marina in Marigot is closed to the public.

In case of emergency please call +33 690 66 19 56.

From 8 am to 4 pm on weekdays and from 8 am to noon on weekends.

You can also contact them by email: [email protected]

 Private boating is now restricted in French waters.

Dingy navigation is authorized for groceries and fuel, but boaters need to fill in the same form as per car drivers.

Galisbay Port

The reception of cruise ships is prohibited since the publication of the Ministerial Decree on March 13th.

All activities at the commercial port, considered a vital structure, are maintained.

There is no cancellation or modification of the schedule in terms of reception of goods.

Hospitals

At the Louis Constant Fleming Hospital, precautionary measures have been taken to limit access to the hospital with exception of the ER.

Circulation on the territory

Both French and Dutch governments have agreed to a “Friendly Border Control” in order to restrict non-essential movements. This is in an effort to reduce the possibility of the spread of the COVID-19 virus.

As such, all residents of the island needing to cross the border will only be able to do so for either work purposes or health purposes.

All will be required to carry their derogatory waiver. 

On March 30th, the Dutch Side of the island has implemented a curfew from 8pm until 6am.

Both the Prefecture and the Collectivité issued a decree stating that all outdoor recreational activities such as going to the beach, hotels pools and shared pools in residences are prohibited until further notice.

Until April 15th, all circulation is prohibited except for the following reasons:

To get to work if working remotely is not possible

To shop for basic necessities in the stores that are authorized to remain open.

To go to the doctor.

To take care of children and/or vulnerable persons.

To take fresh air

A personal derogatory waiver is needed for all circulation.

It can be downloaded from the following links

Facebook : Préfecture de St Barthélémy et de Saint Martin

Website : saint-barth-saint-martin.gouv.fr

It has to be filled in by each individual every time one goes out for a specified reason.The non-compliance to these rules is punishable by a fine starting now from 200€.

Since March 24th, and until further notice, The Simpson Bay Lagoon does no longer allow vessels in.

Educational institutions

Day care centers, kindergartens, schools, colleges and high schools in Saint Martin were closed on Monday March 16th. Schools in Sint Maarten were closed on Wednesday March 18th. 

Businesses

Establishments open to the public and non-essential businesses are closed until April 15th, 2020.

To view the list of establishments that are authorized to continue their activity please consult the following links:

Facebook : Préfecture de St Barthélémy et de Saint Martin

Website: saint-barth-saint-martin.gouv.fr

All stores are required to close at 6pm until April 15th, 2020. 

A reminder for good hygiene practices.

  • Wash your hands regularly
  • Cover your mouth and nose with flexed elbow or tissue when coughing and sneezing
  • Use disposable tissues
  • Greet without shaking hands and avoid kissing
  • Maintain a 4 FEET safety distance
  • Call EMERGENCY +15 if symptoms appear (cough, fever, etc.) and stay at home
  • Wear a mask if you are sick 

For further inquiries please send us an email at [email protected] or call us on +590 590 875721

The entire Tourism Office team remains concerned and is working to help and inform you to the best of our ability.

We will walk through these difficult times together and will be ready to welcome you to our friendly island once this episode is over. Be safe.

St Vincent and the Grenadines on Coronavirus

St Vincent and the Grenadines COVID-19 Preparedness and Response

On Thursday, March 19, 2020, Cabinet considered recommendations from the Ministry of Health, Wellness and the Environment, and took the following decisions:

  1. Approval was granted to maintain the status quo as it relates to travellers from the undermentioned countries, who will be quarantined for fourteen (14) days:

– Iran /   China /  South Korea /  Italy

  1. In addition, all persons arriving from the following countries are required to self-quarantine for fourteen (14) days:

– United States of America (USA) /  United Kingdom (UK) /  European Union (EU) Member Countries

This will take effect from Monday, 23rd March, 2020, from 6:00 a.m.

  1. All persons with a travel history including countries not listed above will be allowed entry once no symptoms of the COVID-19 virus are exhibited.
  1. Upon entering this country, all persons will be issued with a card containing the COVID-19 hotline number and indicating that they are required by law to report any symptom of the COVID-19 virus which may develop after entry and during their stay in this country.

If symptoms develop, the affected person will be isolated and tested.

  1. Social distancing is recommended for members of the household of any person under quarantine.
  1. The Government, having consulted the various stakeholders and in the context of all the circumstances, advises that activities for the Bequia Easter Regatta and the Union Island Easter Festival be cancelled.
  1. The Government reminds all interested persons that the airports and seaports of St. Vincent and the Grenadines remain open, and protocols as enunciated officially will apply.
  1. Under the existing laws, the relevant officials are authorized, in special circumstances, to take other health or security measures as may be deemed necessary.

Office of the Prime Minister

March 20, 2020

 

St Vincent and the Grenadines Sets Measures to Limit Spread of COVID-19

Kingstown, St. Vincent and the Grenadines. (March 18, 2020) – Following the news of the first case of COVID-19 found in St. Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG) to date, the government of the Caribbean nation has announced several measures to limit the spread of the virus.

SVG confirmed its first imported case of the virus on Wednesday, March 11 and Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves said that several meetings of officials have taken place since then to address the issue. The affected person is in self isolation after returning from the United Kingdom.

Measures to limit the spread include ordering the suspension for certain formal ports of entry while the hours of operation at other ports will be expanded in some instances. St. Vincent and the Grenadines is made up of a collection of 32 islands and cays in the Caribbean, nine of which are inhabited. The ports of entry which will remain open for yachts are Wallilabou, Blue Lagoon, Bequia, Mustique, Canouan and Union Island. Crew will have to immediately check in at immigration upon anchoring at a port of entry.

People entering the country with a travel history which includes Iran, China, South Korea and Italy are now to to be quarantined for 14 days upon entry. Approval was also granted to implement active surveillance of people with a travel history that includes countries with community transmission by nurses assigned to hotels.

Measures setup for Vincentians to stay safe include the Prime Minister announcing that he has also given approval to hire between 20 and 25 additional Vincentian nurses “to strengthen surveillance, maintenance and management of COVID 19 especially at airports and other ports of entry”. The Prime Minister also urged Vincentians to take proper cautions to keep themselves and others safe. He has also formally requested from the Cuban government, 12 nurses and three doctors who specialize in handling infectious diseases including COVID-19, to assist in further training of local nurses and medical personnel. An order for equipment and supplies for the testing of COVID-19 was also made by health minister, Luke Browne.

More information on the COVID-19 situation in SVG can be found here: http://health.gov.vc/health/index.php/c

St Vincent and the Grenadines Sets Measures to Limit Spread of COVID-19

Kingstown, St. Vincent and the Grenadines. (March 18, 2020) – Following the news of the first case of COVID-19 found in St. Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG) to date, the government of the Caribbean nation has announced several measures to limit the spread of the virus.

SVG confirmed its first imported case of the virus on Wednesday, March 11 and Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves said that several meetings of officials have taken place since then to address the issue. The affected person is in self isolation after returning from the United Kingdom.

Measures to limit the spread include ordering the suspension for certain formal ports of entry while the hours of operation at other ports will be expanded in some instances. St. Vincent and the Grenadines is made up of a collection of 32 islands and cays in the Caribbean, nine of which are inhabited. The ports of entry which will remain open for yachts are Wallilabou, Blue Lagoon, Bequia, Mustique, Canouan and Union Island. Crew will have to immediately check in at immigration upon anchoring at a port of entry.

People entering the country with a travel history which includes Iran, China, South Korea and Italy are now to to be quarantined for 14 days upon entry. Approval was also granted to implement active surveillance of people with a travel history that includes countries with community transmission by nurses assigned to hotels.

Measures setup for Vincentians to stay safe include the Prime Minister announcing that he has also given approval to hire between 20 and 25 additional Vincentian nurses “to strengthen surveillance, maintenance and management of COVID 19 especially at airports and other ports of entry”. The Prime Minister also urged Vincentians to take proper cautions to keep themselves and others safe. He has also formally requested from the Cuban government, 12 nurses and three doctors who specialize in handling infectious diseases including COVID-19, to assist in further training of local nurses and medical personnel. An order for equipment and supplies for the testing of COVID-19 was also made by health minister, Luke Browne.

More information on the COVID-19 situation in SVG can be found here: http://health.gov.vc/health/index.php/c or Facebook/SVG Health

Canada to close border to non-residents, with exception of United States Citizens

Kingstown, St. Vincent and the Grenadines.  (March 18, 2020) – On Monday March 16, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced that the Canadian border will be closed and that only Canadians citizens, Canadian permanent residents and U.S. citizens will be allowed into the country. This was in response to the rapidly evolving COVID-19 situation and an effort to slow the spread of the virus.

Starting this Wednesday March 18, all international visitors to Canada will be turned around at the airport, with the exception of Americans, diplomats and flight crews. Anyone travelling to Canada will need to self isolate for 14 days. Airlines have also been asked to conduct screenings and anyone displaying any visible symptoms, will not be able to travel to Canada. Also announced was that only four airports in Canada will be accepting international flights to ensure best passenger screenings; Montreal, Toronto, Calgary and Vancouver.

Non residents of Canada currently booked to travel to Canada are advised to contact their travel agent or airline contact to make the necessary changes to their ticket as they may not be allowed to board.

At the press conference on Monday, Trudeau also urged Canadians abroad to come home immediately and for Canadians in the country to stay home as much as possible. Currently in Canada there are 424 cases of COVID-19 across the country.

For more information on the COVID-19 situation in Canada visit: https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/diseases/2019-novel-coronavirus-infection.html   

About St. Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG):

A collection of 32 islands and cays in the Caribbean, St. Vincent and the Grenadines boasts the best of what the authentic Caribbean is renowned for. The Grenadines which stretch 45 miles south from the main island of St. Vincent, include eight inhabited islands: Young Island, Bequia, Mustique, Canouan, Mayreau, Union Island, Palm Island and Petit St.Vincent (PSV). The Tobago Cays (home of SVG’s national marine park) is a horseshoe shaped reef that shields five deserted islets and is known to have some of the best sailing waters in the world.  For more information on the islands of St.Vincent and the Grenadines, please visit www.discoversvg.com

 Media Contact:

Hannah Choat, Public Relations Manager

St. Vincent and the Grenadines, represented by VoX International in Canada / Email: [email protected]Phone: 416.935.1896 ext. 242

The Bahamas on Coronavirus

Bahamas Ministry of Tourism & Aviation Statement on COVID-19 – March 27, 2020

  • No visitor shall be permitted to enter and disembark for any reason including transiting through The Bahamas.
  • All airports throughout the entire Bahamas, including private airports and fixed-base operations (FBOs), shall be closed to all flights.
  • All sea ports shall be closed to regional and international seafaring and private boating.
  • Air and sea restrictions do not apply to: cargo flights or cargo ships, commercial courier flights, emergency medical flights or emergency flights approved by the Civil Aviation Authority.
  • All international visitors currently in The Bahamas should be prepared to stay for an indefinite period of time.
  • No person shall offer for hire or seek to travel on any mail boat, sailing inter island, except for transport of freight; or inter island private commercial sea transport.
  • All residents will be placed on a 24-hour curfew and are to remain at home to avoid contact outside of their family, except for those who have been deemed essential workers, or have special permission from the Commissioner of Police.
  • Residents can leave their homes for essential travel to the doctor, grocery store, bank, pharmacy or to refuel; as well as for outside exercise, not exceeding an hour and a half per day between the hours of 5 a.m. to 9 p.m., provided that the exercise is conducted in one’s yard or one’s immediate neighborhood and no person shall drive to any place to exercise.
  • Proper social distancing guidelines of at least six feet (6ft.) must be followed at all times while outside the home.
  • All public beaches, markets and docks will be closed, and no vehicles are permitted on any public or private roads for any purpose other than stated above.

Full details of this order and the previous Emergency Order may be found at opmbahamas.com.

The Bahamas is conducting COVID-19 testing and has been actively employing several measures used globally to screen visitors and residents and to manage the response to individuals of concern, in line with international health best practices. Traveller health questionnaires and a screening protocol have been used at ports, hotels and rental properties to identify guests who may require surveillance or treatment. In addition, all Bahamian nationals and residents returning to The Bahamas through any point of entry from any of the restricted countries​ or an area where community infection and spread is present, have been quarantined or placed under self-isolation upon arrival and are expected to follow the protocols of the Ministry of Health.

A destination-wide education campaign continues to remind the public of the basic hygiene practices that can be used to prevent the spread of the virus including frequent, proper hand washing, use of hand sanitizers, frequent disinfection of surfaces and avoiding close contact with those exhibiting signs of respiratory illness.

All COVID-19 inquiries should be directed to the Ministry of Health. For questions, or concerns, please call the COVID-19 hotline: 242-376-9350 (8 a.m. – 8 p.m. EDT) / 242-376-9387 (8 p.m. – 8 a.m. EDT).

 

Bahamas Ministry of Tourism & Aviation Statement on COVID-19

NASSAU, Bahamas, March 24, 2020 – The Bahamas Ministry of Tourism & Aviation is following guidance from the Bahamas Ministry of Health and other government agencies pertaining to the country’s Preparedness and Response Plan for COVID-19.  At this time, there are four confirmed cases of coronavirus in Nassau, The Bahamas. Patients are isolated in quarantine following the guidelines outlined by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Given the growing public health concern and to protect the health and well-being of the population of The Bahamas, Prime Minister, The Most Hon. Dr. Hubert Minnis, has announced the enactment of an additional Emergency Order, “Emergency Powers (COVID 19) (NO. 2) Order, 2020.” New Emergency Powers and Regulations will be enforced under this order to prevent further spread of COVID-19, effective 9 a.m., Tuesday, March 24, 2020 and will expire at 9 a.m. on Tuesday, March 31, unless otherwise stated. Preventative restrictions include:

  • No visitor shall be permitted to enter and disembark for any reason including transiting through The Bahamas.
  • All airports including private airports and fixed-base operations (FBOs) shall be closed to incoming international flights carrying any visitor unless written permission of the Competent Authority has been granted.
  • All sea ports shall be closed to regional and international seafaring and private boating.
  • Air and sea restrictions do not apply to: outgoing flights or ships, cargo flights or cargo ships, commercial courier flights, emergency medical flights or emergency flights approved by the Civil Aviation Authority.
  • All international visitors currently in The Bahamas are urged to immediately work with their airline to make travel arrangements to safely return home. Those who choose to remain in The Bahamas should prepare to do so for an indefinite period of time.
  • No person shall offer for hire or seek to travel on any mail boat, sailing inter island, except for transport of freight; or inter island private commercial sea transport.
  • All residents will be placed on a 24-hour curfew and are to remain at home to avoid contact outside of their family, except for those who have been deemed essential workers, or have special permission from the Commissioner of Police.
  • Residents can leave their homes for essential travel to the doctor, grocery store, bank, pharmacy or to refuel; as well as for outside exercise, not exceeding an hour and a half per day between the hours of 5 a.m. to 9 p.m.
  • Proper social distancing guidelines of at least six feet (6ft.) must be followed at all times while outside the home.
  • All public beaches, markets and docks will be closed, and no vehicles are permitted on any public or private roads for any purpose other than stated above.

 

Full details of this order and the previous Emergency Order may be found at opmbahamas.com.

The Bahamas is conducting COVID-19 testing and has been actively employing several measures used globally to screen visitors and residents and to manage the response to individuals of concern, in line with international health best practices. Traveller health questionnaires and a screening protocol have been used at ports, hotels and rental properties to identify guests who may require surveillance or treatment. In addition, all Bahamian nationals and residents returning to The Bahamas through any point of entry from any of the restricted countries or an area where community infection and spread is present have been quarantined or placed under self-isolation upon arrival and are expected to follow the protocols of the Ministry of Health.

A destination-wide education campaign continues to remind the public of the basic hygiene practices that can be used to prevent the spread of the virus including frequent, proper hand washing, use of hand sanitizers, frequent disinfection of surfaces and avoiding close contact with those exhibiting signs of respiratory illness.

All COVID-19 inquiries should be directed to the Ministry of Health. For questions, or concerns, please call the COVID-19 hotline: 242-376-9350 (8 a.m. – 8 p.m. EDT) / 242-376-9387 (8 p.m. – 8 a.m. EDT).

PRESS INQUIRIES

Anita Johnson-Patty / General Manager, Global Communications / Bahamas Ministry of Tourism & Aviation / [email protected]

Weber Shandwick / Public Relations / [email protected]

 

# # #

Bahamas Ministry of Tourism & Aviation Statement on COVID-19

NASSAU, Bahamas, March 20, 2020 – The Bahamas Ministry of Tourism & Aviation is following guidance from the Bahamas Ministry of Health and other government agencies pertaining to the country’s Preparedness and Response Plan for COVID-19.  At this time, there are four confirmed cases of coronavirus in Nassau, The Bahamas. Patients are isolated in quarantine following the guidelines outlined by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

To further protect the well-being of Bahamian citizens, Prime Minister, The Most Hon. Dr. Hubert Minnis, yesterday announced increased preventative measures and protocol to minimize the potential spread of the illness. These include new border control and quarantine measures for persons travelling from highly infected areas, as well as an imposed curfew extending each night from 9:00 p.m. to 5:00 a.m. effective Friday, March 20. Given the growing public health concern and to protect the health and well-being of the population of The Bahamas, effective Thursday, March 19, expanded travel restrictions were introduced. Foreign nationals and foreign individuals who have travelled within the last 20 days from United Kingdom, Ireland and other countries in Europe will be prohibited entry into The Bahamas. This is in addition to restrictions already in place for China, Iran, Italy and South Korea. This restricted travel list of countries will be continuously monitored and updated as necessary.

The Bahamas is conducting COVID-19 testing and is actively employing several measures used globally to screen visitors and residents and to manage the response to individuals of concern, in line with international health best practices. Traveller health questionnaires and a screening protocol are used at ports, hotels and rental properties to identify guests who may require surveillance or treatment. In addition, all Bahamian nationals and residents returning to The Bahamas through any point of entry from any of the restricted countries or an area where community infection and spread is present will be quarantined or be placed under self-isolation upon arrival and are expected to follow the protocols of the Ministry of Health.

A destination-wide education campaign is underway to remind the public of the basic hygiene practices that can be used to prevent the spread of the virus including frequent, proper hand washing, use of hand sanitizers, frequent disinfection of surfaces and avoiding close contact with those exhibiting signs of respiratory illness.

All COVID-19 inquiries should be directed to the Ministry of Health. For questions, or concerns, please call the COVID-19 hotline: 242-376-9350 (8am – 8pm EDT) / 242-376-9387 (8pm – 8am EDT).

Anita Johnson-Patty / General Manager, Global Communications /Bahamas Ministry of Tourism & Aviation

[email protected]

Weber Shandwick / Public Relations /[email protected]

Bahamas Ministry of Tourism and Aviation Statement on COVID-19

NASSAU, Bahamas, March 16, 2020 – The Bahamas Ministry of Health is working closely with  all pertinent government agencies throughout the destination to execute the Bahamas National Preparedness and Response Plan for COVID-19.  At this time, there is one confirmed case of coronavirus in Nassau, The Bahamas. The patient is in isolated quarantine following the guidelines outlined by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The Ministry of Health is currently conducting full contact analysis and more details will be shared as they become available.

The Ministry of Health is encouraging preventative measures and protocol to minimize the potential spread of the illness, and The Bahamas implemented new border control and quarantine measures for persons travelling from highly infected areas. Given the growing public health concern and to protect the health and well-being of the population of The Bahamas, effective Thursday, March 19, expanded travel restrictions will be introduced. Foreign nationals and foreign individuals who have travelled within the last 20 days from the United Kingdom, Ireland and​ Europe will be prohibited entry into The Bahamas.​ This is in addition to restrictions already in place for China, Iran, Italy and South Korea.​ This restricted travel list of countries will be continuously monitored and updated as necessary.​

The Bahamas is conducting COVID-19 testing and is actively employing several measures used globally to screen visitors and residents and to manage the response to individuals of concern, in line with international health best practices. Traveller health questionnaires and a screening protocol are used at ports, hotels and rental properties to identify guests who may require surveillance or treatment. In addition, all Bahamian nationals and residents returning to The Bahamas through any point of entry from any of the restricted countries​ or an area where community infection and spread is present will be quarantined or be placed under self-isolation upon arrival and are expected to follow the protocols of the Ministry of Health.

A destination-wide education campaign is underway to remind the public of the basic hygiene practices that can be used to prevent the spread of the virus including frequent, proper hand washing, use of hand sanitizers, frequent disinfection of surfaces and avoiding close contact with those exhibiting signs of respiratory illness.

All COVID-19 inquiries should be directed to the Ministry of Health. For questions, or concerns, please call the COVID-19 hotline: 242-376-9350 (8am – 8pm EDT) / 242-376-9387 (8pm – 8am EDT).

PRESS INQUIRIES

Anita Johnson-Patty / General Manager, Global Communications / Bahamas Ministry of Tourism & Aviation / [email protected] /

Weber Shandwick / Public Relations / [email protected]

 

Bahamas Ministry of Tourism & Aviation Statement On COVID-19

The Bahamas Ministry of Health is working closely with the all pertinent government agencies throughout the destination to execute The Bahamas National Preparedness and Response Plan for COVID-19.  At this time, there are no reported cases of the coronavirus in The Bahamas.

The World Health Organization (WHO) does not currently recommend any restriction of travel or trade, and The Bahamas continues to welcome visitors to the destination. The Bahamas is one of the few countries conducting COVID-19 testing and is actively employing several measures used globally to screen visitors and residents and to manage the response to individuals of concern in line with international health best practices. Traveller health questionnaires and a screening protocol are used at ports, hotels and rental properties to identify guests who may require surveillance or treatment.

On January 30, 2020, The Bahamas implemented border control and quarantine measures for persons travelling from China as a component of the country’s Emergency Preparedness and Response Plan.

  • All travellers, who are not citizens or residents of The Bahamas, with a history of travel to China within the previous 20 days are to be denied entry.
  • Citizens and residents with a history of travel to China within the previous 20 days are to be quarantined and monitored closely by the Public Health Department to determine whether possible exposure while in China will result in illness.  Should they become ill, they will be managed per clinical management WHO guidelines for cases of COVID-19.
  • There are currently only four (4) quarantine cases in The Bahamas.
  • Currently, no other countries are restricted but the Government of The Bahamas is reviewing this matter on an ongoing basis and will keep the travelling public informed.

A destination-wide education campaign is underway to remind the public of the basic hygiene practices that can be used to prevent the spread of the virus including frequent, proper hand washing, use of hand sanitizers, frequent disinfection of surfaces and avoiding close contact with those exhibiting signs of respiratory illness.

The Bahamas is following the protocol outlined in the International Health Regulations (IHR) and reporting to WHO as appropriate. The WHO currently considers the risk to The Bahamas and Caribbean from the coronavirus to be low, but a key element of the IHR plan is to inform the public of relevant updates regularly.

For more information on 2019-nCoV, please visit these websites:

Inquiries on COVID-19 in The Bahamas should be directed to the Bahamas Ministry of Health, at 1-242-502-4790, 1-242-502-4776, 1-242-502-4737 or 1-242-397-1021.

Turks and Caicos Islands on Coronavirus

TCI Travel Advisory # 3  – The Emergency Powers (COVID-19) Regulations 2020.

BORDER CLOSURE

The Turks and Caicos Islands Ministry of Tourism and Tourist Board continue to work along with the Ministry of Health as we prepare for the possibility of coronavirus (COVID-19) reaching the Turks and Caicos Islands. The Turks and Caicos Islands as of today 20th March 2020 reported zero confirmed cases of COVID-19 virus.

The safety and security of the travelling population is our major concern. We would like to advise visitors and travel industry partners of the recent changes in regulations that will affect travel to the destination.  Please take note of the following: The Emergency Powers (COVID-19) Regulations 2020 which will come into operation on 24th March 2020.

Closure of Airports and Sea Ports 

(1) For the purposes of preventing, controlling and suppressing the spread of the virus—

(a) all airports shall be closed to regional and international flights;

(b) all sea ports shall be closed to regional and international seafaring; and

(c) no visitor shall be permitted to enter or transit through the Turks and Caicos Islands,
for a period of twenty-one days, commencing on the date these Regulations come into force or until such date as the Governor may be notice specify.

(2) The restriction contained in subregulation (1) does not apply to—

(a) outgoing flights or outgoing ships, as the case may be;

(b) cargo flights or cargo ships, as the case may be;

(c) courier flights;

(d) medevac flights;

(e) technical stops (stops by aircraft to refuel and proceed onward to another destination);

(f) emergency flights approved by the Civil Aviation Authority and the Airports Authority; or

(g)  a Turks and Caicos Islander or resident returning to the Islands.

(3) A Turks and Caicos Islander or resident who, at the date of commencement of these Regulations, had travelled to the Islands from a place outside the Islands, shall be—

(a) subjected to screening and passenger tracing at port of entry;

(b) subjected to clinical examination at port of entry;

(c) for the purposes of surveillance by the Chief Medical officer, required to remain at home or such other place of quarantine as specified by the Chief Medical officer and subject to such conditions as are provided by the Chief Medical Officer, for a period of fourteen days.

Screening Requirements

  1. (1) For the purposes of these Regulations, the screening and clinical examination requirements, in relation to a person are requirements to the effect that a person shall—

(a) answer questions about his health or other relevant circumstances (including travel history and information about other individuals with whom he may have had contact);

(b) produce any documents which may assist a medical officer in assessing his health;

(c) at such time as a medical officer may specify, allow a medical officer, to take a biological sample the person, including a sample of his respiratory secretions or blood, by appropriate means including by swabbing his nasopharyngeal cavity, or provide such a sample; and

(d) provide sufficient information to enable the person to be contacted immediately by a medical officer during such period as a medical officer may specify, where the medical officer considers that such provision of information is necessary in order to reduce or remove the risk of the person infecting or contaminating others.

For full details and guidance on the Emergency Powers Regulation COVID-19 20th March 2020 please go to: https://www.gov.tc/moh/coronavirus/regulations

Please be reminded that:  As of March 17th the list of ‘infected countries’ in Regulation 2 of the Public and Environmental Health (Control Measures)(COVID-19) Regulations 2020 has been amended to include the following additional countries which are experiencing sustained in country transmission and may pose a risk to the public health of the Turks and Caicos Islands.

This list is based on the CDCs travel advisories which lists the following countries as having widespread ongoing transmission (level 3 warning). The expansion includes the following countries:

Austria
Belgium
Czech Republic
Denmark
Estonia
Finland
France
Germany

Greece
Hungary
Iceland
Italy
Latvia
Liechtenstein
Lithuania

Luxembourg

Malta
Netherlands
Norway
Poland
Portugal
Slovakia
Slovenia

Spain
Sweden
Switzerland
Monaco
San Marino
Vatican City

 

In addition to the above screening protocols, travellers coming from such states will be asked to monitor themselves for symptoms over the subsequent 14 days and if they develop symptoms, then immediately call the Ministry of Heath’s Coronavirus hotline: (649) 333-0911 and (649) 232-9444.

The government continues to monitor this fluid situation and will update the general public regularly. For additional information, please visit our website www.gov.tc/moh/coronavirus, or email [email protected].

 

Turks and Caicos Islands Public and Environmental Health (Control Measures) (COVID 19) Regulations 2020

Travel Advisory as of March 10th 2020

The Turks and Caicos Islands Ministry of Tourism and Tourist Board continue to work along with the Ministry of Health as we prepare for the possibility of coronavirus (COVID-19) reaching the Turks and Caicos Islands. As of 10th March 2020, the Ministry of Health report zero suspected and zero confirm cases in the Turks and Caicos Islands.

The Turks and Caicos Islands Ministry of Tourism and Tourist Board is working closely with its partners from the Ministry of Health, the lead agency for the prevention of this virus. On behalf of all our partners we hereby advise visitors and travel industry partners of the recent changes in regulations which may affect travel to the destination. The safety of our visitors is of utmost importance and we advise all visitors to take note of the Turks and Caicos Islands Public and Environmental Health (Control Measures) (COVID-19) Regulations 2020 which came into effect on March 10, 2020:

The general and travelling public is hereby being asked to take note of the following provisions of the Turks and Caicos Islands Public and Environmental Health (Control Measures) (COVID-19) Regulations 2020 which came into effect on March 10, 2020:

  1. Refusal of entry of direct flight to the Islands originating from infected country

No flight originating from an infected country shall be permitted to land in the Islands.

Infected country means China, Iran, South Korea, Italy, Singapore, Macau, Japan and any other country which the Governor declares from time to time, by notice published in the Gazette, as a country where there is known or thought to be sustained human-to-human transmission of Covid-19, or from which the CDC reports there is a high risk of importation of infection or contamination (with Covid-19) via travel from that country to the Islands;

  1. Refusal of entry of cruise ship carrying passenger from infected country 

No cruise ship shall be permitted to enter the Islands, where that cruise ship is carrying a passenger who has travelled to, from or through an infected country within a period of twenty-one days or less immediately preceding the intended arrival in the Islands.

  1. Refusal of entry to the Islands by visitors after visit to an infected country

No visitor shall be permitted to enter the Islands, whether by ship or aircraft, where that person has travelled to, from or through an infected country within a period of twenty-one days or less immediately preceding the visitor’s arrival in the Islands.

  1. Persons in the Islands who have travelled to, from or through infected country may be quarantined

(I) A Turks and Caicos Islander or resident of the Islands who arrives in the Islands after travel to, from or through an infected country shall be—

(a) subjected to screening and passenger tracing at port of entry;

(b) subjected to clinical examination at port of entry; and

(c) quarantined for a period of fourteen days, as deemed necessary.

(II) A person referred to in sub regulation (1) who is deemed at high risk of having the virus by a health officer, based on travel or contact information but is asymptomatic, shall, for the purposed of surveillance by the Chief Medical officer, be placed under quarantine in a specified place for up to fourteen days and monitored for symptoms and signs of viral illness daily by a health officer.

(III) An immigration officer shall alert the health authorities of any Turks and Caicos Islander or resident of the Islands arriving in the Islands –

(a) who has travelled to, from or through an infected country within the within the last twenty-one days;

(b) with symptoms suggestive of the virus; or

(c) if he suspects that a person has been exposed to the virus.

(IV) A person suspected of having been exposed to or having symptoms of the virus shall be removed to an isolation room for assessment and evaluation by health officials.

(V) A person who is symptomatic or a person who becomes symptomatic under home-based quarantine shall be placed under quarantine in a designated facility with precaution taken to protect uninfected persons from exposure to the virus.

(VI) Where –

(a) any person in the Islands who, at the date of the commencement of these Regulations had travelled to, from or through an infected country within a period of twenty one days or less immediately preceding the person’s arrival in the Islands; and

(b) that person shows respiratory symptoms or symptoms of the virus, the person

(c) shall be managed under the direction of the Chief Medical Officer and shall be quarantined at a quarantine facility specified by the Chief Medical Officer for a period of up to fourteen days, or until the Chief Medical Officer determines that the person is fully recovered, whichever is later.

  1. Health practitioners, health officers and other persons may be quarantined 

A health practitioner, health officer or any other person who may have had direct contact with a person suspected of having the virus or with bodily fluids of such a person shall, on assessment, be subject to quarantine for fourteen days, or until the Chief Medical Officer determines that the person is fully recovered, whichever is later.

  1. Court’s power to order quarantine

If on the application of a health officer the court is satisfied that a person who is placed under quarantine has failed to comply with such direction, the court may order him to be placed under quarantine for a period specified in the order and a health officer and any police officer may do all things necessary for giving effect to the order.

  1. Duty to provide information

The Chief Medical Officer may, request any person to provide to the Chief Medical Officer with such information the Chief Medical Officer considers necessary to assess what precautions should be taken to prevent the spread of the virus in the Islands.

  1. Offence 

A person who does not provide any information as required by sub regulation 9, or who leaves a specified place or a designated facility when he is placed under quarantine there, commits an offence and is liable on conviction to a fine or to a term of imprisonment.

 

Statement on Coronavirus from Turks and Caicos Islands Ministry of Tourism 

Grand Turk, Turks and Caicos Islands (10 March 2020) – The Turks and Caicos Islands Ministry of Tourism, Tourist Board and relevant industry partners are working collaboratively with the Ministry of Health, the lead agency tasked with monitoring the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19). To date, the Turks and Caicos Islands has no suspected or confirmed cases of the Novel Coronavirus.

Turks and Caicos Islands Minister of Tourism Hon. Ralph Higgs stated that “we have confidence in the actions and protocols that are in place by the Ministry of Health for the management of this disease. We endorse the Ministry of Health’s updates and releases aimed at safeguarding residents and visitors alike.  To date, the Turks and Caicos Islands will continue to review and monitor the risk, as the Ministry of Health implements aggressive protocols, as outlined by regional and international health agencies. ‘

Travel restrictions issued in the press release of March 2nd from the Ministry responsible for Health remain in place on the following:

  • All returning residents who have visited infected countries with high transmission such as China, Hong Kong, Thailand, Singapore, Macau, South Korea, Japan or Italy in the last 14-20 days will have landing privileges but will be subject to health assessment and quarantine.
  • Persons who have visited China, Hong Kong, Thailand, Singapore, Macau, South Korea, Japan or Italy in the last 14-20 days and who do not have permanent residency or marriage exemption in Turks and Caicos Islands will not be granted landing privileges at any of the country’s ports of entry (sea/air).

As of Tuesday, 10 March, the Cabinet of the Turks and Caicos Islands Government released updated regulations to control the entry of persons to the Turks and Caicos Islands from various countries experiencing an outbreak of COVID-19; these restrictions are similar to that of regional and neighbouring territories to strengthen our approach and assist in safeguarding visitors and residents alike.  These restrictions are in accordance with the Turks and Caicos Islands Public and Environmental Health (Control Measures) (COVID-19) Regulations 2020 which came into effect on March 10, 2020.  Further information regarding the requirements may be retrieved by visiting Cabinet approves Control Measures.

The Turks and Caicos Islands tourism industry is under heightened surveillance to ensure the safety of visitors to the destination and our residents alike.  A nation-wide education campaign is underway to remind residents and visitors of basic hygiene practices that can be used to prevent the spread of the virus including:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing; going to the bathroom; and before eating or preparing food.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Stay home when you are sick and do not travel.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Staying home when you are sick is recommended every flu season, but especially important now.

The Turks and Caicos Islands is following the protocol outlined in the International Health Regulation (IHR) and reporting to Public Health England/PAHO as appropriate. Similarly, all the necessary protocols are in place for the Cruise Ship Industry and the residents and visitors of Grand Turk.

The Ministry of Health is currently operating emergency health hotlines from 6am to 11pm (EST) to provide residents and visitors with urgent information about the Coronavirus. The hotline may be reached by calling 649-333-0911 or 649-232-9444. Additional information is also available by visiting https://www.gov.tc/moh/coronavirus.

The Ministry of Tourism will also liaise with partners to determine the exact extent of the impact of this disease on the industry, and put in place the appropriate measures regarding public relations and marketing strategies that are or will become necessary to safeguard this vital industry. We urge everyone to follow the necessary guidelines and ‘keep in the know’ to ensure your health and safety.