Bartlett, Tufton say cruise lines committed to working with Gov't on COVID-19Tuesday, March 10, 2020
KINGSTON, Jamaica — Minister of Tourism Edmund Bartlett and Minister of Health & Wellness Dr Christopher Tufton yesterday said that the world's major cruise lines have committed to working closely with the Government regarding stringent health protocols for visiting ships in wake of COVID-19.
This commitment follows a crucial meeting Friday, March 6, with the executives of MSC and Carnival Cruise Lines, Dr Tufton, Bartlett, Attorney General Marlene Malahoo-Forte, and other officials.
"All parties are fully committed to putting people and their well-being first, and we have committed to ensure that the sector can effectively help to mitigate against the spread of the coronavirus,” the ministers said.
The World Health Organization's Emergency Committee has declared coronavirus a global health emergency given the rise in new cases outside China.
According to the ministry, Jamaica currently has no confirmed case of coronavirus.
“Health security remains a critical part of destination assurance so I am pleased about the outcome of this meeting which forms part of our effort to prevent and mitigate the spread of the virus,” Bartlett added.
The ministry said Chief Medical Officer, Dr Jacqueline Bisasor-McKenzie, who was also in attendance, outlined the health protocols which, after rigorous discussions with the cruise lines, were accepted.
The protocols are as follows:
- Copy of the medical logs since the start of the voyage. Jamaica requests that travel history, temperatures and the presence or absence of respiratory symptoms be recorded and submitted for review.
- Travel history for all persons in the medical log. Any person who has a fever and/or respiratory symptoms who has been in a country where there is transmission of COVID-19 should be immediately isolated and close contacts quarantined (refer to the WHO document on Management of Public Health risks on ships).
- Temperature log of all persons, including within the last 24 hours, prior to arrival, travelling from the countries with travel restrictions within the past 14 days. Jamaica recommends that persons with a travel history to countries with transmission of COVID-19 be monitored on board as if in home/self quarantine.
- Updated Maritime Declaration of Health within four hours of the ship's arrival.