St Lucia has recorded its 19th case of the coronavirus (COVID-19) after a 33-year-old woman cruise ship worker, who was among several nationals repatriated tested positive for the virus.
The Ministry of Health said that she was the only positive case among a batch of 23 tests conducted by the Ezra Long Laboratory of the Owen King EU Hospital here and that she had been placed in institutional quarantine in keeping with the national protocol on her arrival.
“In keeping with the testing strategy for repatriated cruise line workers, she was swabbed to determine her COVID-19 status. Upon receiving results confirming this case, the individual has now been placed in isolation for care and is doing well. Although in this instance the positive COVID-19 result was from an individual in quarantine, the contact tracing process shall still apply,” the Ministry of Health said in the statement.
“It is with the commitment to protect the health of every single citizen we require adherence to this quarantine process.”– The Ministry of Health
Several Caribbean countries have been receiving their nationals who have been working on cruise liners in recent weeks and most of these islands have reported positive cases among some of the returning nationals.
“It should be noted that there is very low risk to the other people in quarantine given their compliance to the requirements for minimising risks of exposure to the virus,” the Ministry of Health said, adding “this recently confirmed case demonstrates the importance of our protocol for having every returning national placed in quarantine and monitored for the required 14 days.
“It is with the commitment to protect the health of every single citizen we require adherence to this quarantine process. Although we know it may create some amount of anxiety and even frustration for some, the overall benefit of protecting the health and safety of all, in the long run, outweigh these inconveniences.”
The Ministry of Health said it is advising everyone to maintain the standard recommendations to prevent the spread of infection, including regular hand washing with soap and water or alcohol based hand sanitiser where soap and water is not available and using a mask when in public along with maintaining the six feet physical distance.