Government could do away with pre-testing for visitors from some States

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Government could do away with pre-testing for visitors from some States

Friday, September 18, 2020

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KINGSTON, Jamaica— The Government is reviewing the pre-testing approach that is now in effect, primarily for visitors coming out of North America.

Currently, a negative COVID-19 PCR test result is required to be uploaded for residents of the United States, Brazil, The Dominican Republic and Mexico, who are 12 years of age and older.

Health and Wellness Minister, Dr Christopher Tufton, gave an update during the weekly COVID Conversations digital press conference yesterday.

“I've been given the permission to say that from a tourism perspective, we are reviewing the pre-testing approach that is now in effect, primarily coming out of North America, but also from other countries,” Dr Tufton said.

“We are reviewing, meaning public health, with the sanctioning of the Cabinet subcommittee and the prime minister, the reasons why the pre-testing was put in place in the first place, which was based on the risk assessment in the markets where most of the tourists were coming from,” the minister added.

Dr Tufton pointed out that the Government is seeing adjustments in that risk profile, where a number of States are seeing a decline in positives, and in some instances, a significant decline.

“The inclination therefore, based on that assessment, is to review and determine to what extent there is a need for the pre-testing, either across the board or in selected States, and the public health's position will be recommended to the Cabinet…and we're looking to have a decision taken certainly by the end of this month for October 1, if possible, and it could possibly mean that we could do away with pre-testing, if not altogether, certainly in regard to certain States,” he said.

This, he said, should address some of the challenges “that we have been experiencing as it relates to our visitors coming in”.

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