On Tuesday, July 14, 2020 Saint Lucia recorded a positive case of COVID-19. The individual is a 27-year-old male, a returning national who arrived in Saint Lucia on Friday, July 10, 2020.
Upon arrival, he was tested and placed in institutional quarantine. Upon receipt of the results, the individual have been transferred to the respiratory hospital for isolation and related supportive care. He is currently doing well. The risk to people in quarantine and staff of the facility is assessed as low given the infection prevention and control guidelines in place at the quarantine site.
As we move to the fifth phase of the re-opening of the economy which is of the highest risk to the population, we anticipate the introduction of cases with both returning nationals and tourist arrivals.
Therefore, we remind the public on the importance of the protocols as we continue to manage COVID-19. All sectors are encouraged to adhere to the public health protocols which include the recommended 6 ft. physical distancing, regular handwashing with soap and water and the proper use of a face mask/scarf. At this stage most sectors have re-opened, the public is reminded that mass crowd events are still closed.
Nationals and visitors are asked to adhere to the protocols that have been put in place. This effort will play a significant part in minimizing the threat of COVID-19. The Ministry of Health is working in collaboration with the Ministry of Tourism and recently convened an emergency meeting to ensure the reinforcement of the protocols for guests at all approved COVID-19 certified accommodations.
The Ministry of Health and Wellness once again reiterates the importance of quarantine as a measure to minimize the risk of transmitting COVID-19. This action is expected to protect the health and safety of every individual within our country. As it stands right now, the policy for passengers returning to Saint Lucia outside the Caribbean bubble is to undergo institutional quarantine.
However, some passengers may qualify for home quarantine based on certain requirements.
Passengers who will qualify for home quarantine include minors (less than 18 years) and families with young children; individuals with underlying medical conditions or disabilities; persons coming from low-risk areas and persons whose homes meet the criteria for home quarantine.
The public is asked to cooperate and encourage family members and friends who have return from overseas and are presently in quarantine to remain at home for the 14-day duration. The names of all persons in-home quarantine will be forwarded to the Royal Saint Lucia Police Force to support with the enforcement of compliance. The public is advised that they should alert the nearest police station or the Ministry of Health and Wellness at 468-5349/ 468-5342/ 468-5312 with information in relation to anyone who breaches home quarantine guidelines.
The Ministry of Health and Wellness will continue providing regular updates on COVID-19.