Friday 3 April, 2020

Two of St Lucia's COVID-19 patients returned to UK; third recovered

Chief Medical Officer Dr Sharon Belmar-George

Chief Medical Officer Dr Sharon Belmar-George

St Lucia has repatriated two COVID-19 patients to the United Kingdom.

The Ministry of Health issued a release today, Wednesday, March 25, 2020, which stated: "Saint Lucia has had a total of three confirmed cases of COVID-19. The first two cases have since been repatriated to the UK between March 24 and 25, 2020. The third case has recovered but continues to be in isolation to reduce possible transmission."

The release noted that the Victoria Hospital/OKEU transition commenced today and is scheduled to be completed by Friday, March 27. The public is advised to utilise alternative medical services during this period.

"The Government of Saint Lucia has instituted national country scale down from Monday, March 23, 2020. The public is advised that this measure is put in place to facilitate social distancing that is to reduce direct person-to-person contact.

It encourages a greater than usual physical distance from other persons or objects in public places in order to minimise exposure and reduce the transmission of infection. Measures to facilitate social distancing includes school closure; use of essential services only, non-attendance to mass crowd activities including sports, church, social gatherings; closure and avoidance of recreational activities such as beach limes; avoiding public places; avoiding regular trips to supermarket and reducing visits to your home by friends or family."

"A special appeal is going out to the public to stop sharing fake videos and voice notes. Apart from it being dishonest, it creates an unnecessary level of panic which is counteractive to the behavioural patterns we need adopted at this time.

We continue to advise the public to focus on the maintenance of standard recommendations to prevent the spread of infection. These include:

  • regular handwashing with soap and water or alcohol-based hand sanitizer where soap and water is not available.
  • cover mouth and nose with disposable tissues or clothing when coughing and sneezing.
  • avoid close contact with anyone showing symptoms of respiratory illness such as coughing and sneezing.
  • seek medical attention and share your travel history with your health care provider if you have symptoms suggestive of respiratory illness either during or after travel.

The Department of Health and Wellness will continue providing regular updates on COVID-19.

For more information please contact the Office of the Chief Medical Officer or the Epidemiology Unit, at 468-5309/468-5317 respectively."

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