Minister for Health and Social Development Hon. Carvin Malone has announced that the fourth Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) test initially announced that visitors were mandated to take as part of the new COVID-19 protocols for travelling to the territory from December 1, is going back to the drawing board.
Initially, the Government announced that prior to arrival, visitors would have to take one test for the dreaded COVID-19.
If the test returns negative, they will be allowed entry; however, when they arrive in the territory, they would have to take another PCR test at the T. B. Lettsome International Airport.
They would then be allowed to be transported to their accommodation and four days later be retested. Then another test would be conducted on the eighth day, which, if it is negative would allow them unrestricted access to the Territory.
Persons from a broad cross-section of the population who voiced their opinion via social media believe that the protocols being proposed will do more harm than good and push the tourists away to other destinations with less stringent measures.
Addressing the issue last night, while he was a guest on the Honestly Speaking radio programme on Tuesday, October 28, Malone said: “We have to speak with our medical professionals, in order to do this. Our epidemiologist, our Chief Medical Officer, and the hospital personnel have given us some statistics on if you do this, then these are the increased risks that you are taking. If this 8th day is going to be insurmountable as it relates to the test only, then we are going to have to look and see what is the increased risk of not doing this.”
He continued to explain that the test would have to be substituted with another protocol.
“So we are going to relook the eighth day and look in terms of what increased risks not having it will take,” he remarked.