Health officials keeping an eye on countries in CARICOM Bubble

By Staff Writer, MyVue News.com,

Basseterre, 30th October, 2020 (MyVue News.com)- With only days remaining before St. Kitts and Nevis joins the much talked about CARICOM COVID-19 Travel Bubble, health officials in the country are giving the assurance that they are closely monitoring developments in some of the other participating territories, that continue to be challenged by the virus.

The countries participating in the Bubble are Anguilla, Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Dominica, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Grenada and Montserrat.

Like its sister states in the region, St. Kitts & Nevis has been eager to revive its tourism and travel sector, which since March this year, has been brought, almost to its knees, with commercial flights suspended and airports closed, as the virus takes its toll, with the loss of life, hospitalizations and rising infections in some countries.

While the past 14 days has seen 34 new cases in St. Lucia, taking their total to 73, Barbados with 25 increasing their count to 233 and nearby Antigua & Barbuda rising to 124 with 13 new cases, St. Kitts and Nevis has remained on only 19 confirmed cases, none of which are active.

Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Hazel Laws explained that, “We are really looking out for the evidence of community transmission of COVID-19. In essence, we are in the process of evaluating the risk of participating in the CARICOM Bubble.”

Looking at the situation in St. Lucia, the CMO revealed that the Owen King Union Hospital in that country is experiencing some challenges.

Three employees tested positive and their outpatient services have been suspended for the next two weeks. Only emergency services will be performed, stated Laws.

In addition to expected arrivals from the Bubble, the visitors will also be arriving from other countries, such as the world’s hot spot, the United States.

However, the main airport is currently being retrofitted to help mitigate the risks involved, and testing and isolation rooms, as well as other new facilities and protocols are being prepared for the new reality.

Medical staff at the various hospitals, said the CMO are already sensitized, trained and their facilities have been outfitted with required assets and other resources.

The borders are due to open on Saturday, 31st October, 2020.

Main Photo: DR. HAZEL LAWS, CHIEF MEDICAL OFFICER

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