CARPHA to launch public health assurance stamp and mobile app for tourism sector

CARPHA to launch public health assurance stamp and mobile app for tourism sector

Wednesday, October 21, 2020

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PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad (CMC) — The Trinidad-based Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) is to launch two initiatives that regional tourism stakeholders say are intended to protect the Caribbean tourism sector and safeguard the health and safety of residents and visitors in the era of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

CARPHA's executive director, Dr Joy St John, said that the new tools, which will debut on November 5, are part of CARPHA's Traveller's Health Programme (THP), which provides an early monitoring and response system to public health issues that impact tourism.

The THP is a key outcome of a unique partnership established six years ago to bridge collaboration between health and tourism authorities aimed at safeguarding the health of travellers and employees in the hospitality industry.

CARPHA said that the Caribbean Travellers Health Assurance stamp for Healthier Safer Tourism (HST) is a measurable and verifiable recognition award for tourism entities and destinations that are implementing the recommended proactive COVID-19 health monitoring and safety measures.

“Caribbean travellers now have the added assurance of a healthier, safer option for accommodations and services awarded the HST stamp,” said Dr St John, adding that the stamp has been approved by the Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) and the Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association (CHTA).

She said that hospitality facilities awarded the HST stamp will be listed as preferred options on the Caribbean Traveller's Health Mobile App and awardees will also be listed on the websites of CARPHA and CHTA, with links to regional and international health and tourism stakeholders.

“The Caribbean Traveller's Health Mobile App is a unique, multifaceted, health information repository, designed for travellers and health and tourism stakeholders. It provides travel health information by each Caribbean destination health alerts of current public health issues, COVID-19 proactive/prevention measures, and travel requirements by country.

“It links directly to CARPHA's COVID-19 situation reports, guidelines, and the THP. The app also identifies accommodations and other hospitality facilities within a destination that have been awarded the Caribbean Travellers Health Assurance stamp,” CARPHA added.

CARPHA's director of Surveillance and Head of the THP, Dr Lisa Indar, said that the app will be expanded next year to include cruise ships that have been awarded the stamp.

“CARPHA is uniquely resourced and positioned to provide reliable travellers health information of this detail and magnitude,” she said, noting that the app has been designed for both iOS and Android platforms.

CARPHA said in addition to the stamp and the App, its Proactive COVID-19 Health Measures for Tourism are aimed at building travellers' assurance, tourism resilience, and regional health security.

The measures include utilising the Tourism and Health Information System, a web-based, early warning and response information system to capture illnesses in real time and thereby reduce spread and reputational damage and certified training in COVID-19 health measures for the hospitality sector.

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