Cruise ships in Kingstown. (iWN file photo)

The Ministry of Health in St. Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG) has noted that there is “a lot of concerns about cruise ships” and the spread of the coronavirus, COVID-19.

SVG, on Wednesday, recorded its first case of the virus when a Vincentian woman, aged 30 to 35, who had visited England, tested positive for the virus and was placed in isolation at home. The woman is expected to make a full recovery and three members of her household have been quarantined for 14 days.

“This case is similar to the case in Jamaica, where the person is a local who is coming from a country which has had not been identified,” Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Simone Keizer-Beache told a press conference in Kingstown to announce the presence of the illness in SVG.

“That’s the nature of a pandemic.  A pandemic means there’s spread throughout the world. So any country at this point is a potential source of infection,” she said.

Keizer-Beache continued:

“So what do we need to do? We need to be very aware of ourselves and all of our brothers and sisters. And so, be aware. Do you have a cough, a cold, a flu? Is it unusual?

“But how do I protect myself from getting that and as we have been saying, it seems basic, but let us not touch our faces, let us make sure we clean our hands. We are cleaning surfaces. That is the way in which we would attempt to keep this under control.”

She spoke of an epidemic curve, “where if we have decreased contact, you slow the curve, you diminish the peak so that you don’t have a major influx of patients which will strain the healthcare system at all of your services.

“So the intention is, the attempt is to slow this curve. And the only we are going to do that is we’re going to decrease the rate at which we spread and the way we do that, again, is basic hand hygiene. If you cough, you cough in your elbow. If you cough, you cough in your tissue and you discard your tissue immediately.”

Kingstown has also said that it would not ban flights from Europe or the United States as part of its efforts to reduce the spread of the disease in SVG.

5 replies on “COVID-19 in SVG: Ministry notes concerns about cruise ship arrivals”

  1. Not good enough, if cruise ship companies themselves have cancelled sailings, if other countries have banned cruise ships, it is obvious that we must understand the dirty beach syndrome.

  2. I’m sure we all realize who the government is, what kind of government we have and how mindful they are of SVG wellbeing.

  3. We must ask ourselves who gains from our open borders here when all the world are taking serious action to close their borders and protect their people from the spread of this Coronavirus.

    https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2020/03/coronavirus-pandemic-worldwide-death-toll-surges-5000-200313233453162.html

    We note that most countries are introducing unprecedented measures, as the global death toll surges past 5,000 with some 145,000 infections logged. Spain, the US and New Zealand being the latest to announce restrictive measures on Border controls.

    Would it be gross incompetence, negligence or greed on the part of our Government to refrain from closing our borders when all the world is doing so, from Asia to Europe to the Americas?

    Are we so confident that this Coronavirus would have little effect upon us or that we can easily manage any potential outbreak that could remain so relaxed about our own borders?

    https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2020/01/countries-confirmed-cases-coronavirus-200125070959786.html

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