Coronavirus and Travel Questions
The coronavirus COVID-19 is worrying many nations and tourist destinations. The World Health Organization and International Health Regulations boards met to determine the outbreak in China meets criteria for the PHEIC (public health emergency international concern). To try and keep more nations from a large epidemic, travel restrictions are in place with measures of containment. The US has several documented cases, with possible outbreaks in at least six states.
On January 30, 2020, St. Lucia announced they would restrict travel on non-nationals from Mainland China with a history of traveling within Mainland China for the last fourteen days.
The Department of Health and Wellness is discouraging travel, particularly any non-essential travel to Hong Kong, Mainland China, Republic of Korea, Japan, Italy, and Singapore. For individuals who live on St. Lucia and who have been to areas with known outbreaks, they will need to be quarantined for fourteen days.
St. Lucia is working to strengthen its local capacity to handle medical issues, including the virus, and will maintain its efforts against the global threat of a pandemic.
In a more recent statement, St. Lucia reminded travelers they continue to have their travel restrictions in place with a quarantine set up for those who are returning from any country with an outbreak.
The island has issued a public statement to help prevent the spread of disease, including coronavirus, should it appear on the island. Authorities ask for regular handwashing with soap and water or alcohol-based sanitizers. Always cover the nose and mouth with disposable tissues or clothing when sneezing or coughing. Anyone who has a sign of a respiratory illness needs to avoid contact with others. If travel history indicates, possible contamination, people are urged to seek medical attention immediately.
At this point, St. Lucia has two confirmed cases of the virus and, with travel restrictions in place, hopes to continue being contained and not spread any further.