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  • Mandatory coronavirus (COVID-19) testing will be conducted on tourists when the country reopens to non-nationals on Monday, June 15.
  • The confirmation came from Minister of Tourism, Hon. Edmund Bartlett, during the Ministry of Health and Wellness ‘Every One Counts’ COVID Conversations Digital Town Hall, held on Thursday (June 11).
  • Minister Bartlett said testing of the visitors arriving from source markets, including the United States of America and Canada, will be done.

Mandatory coronavirus (COVID-19) testing will be conducted on tourists when the country reopens to non-nationals on Monday, June 15.

The confirmation came from Minister of Tourism, Hon. Edmund Bartlett, during the Ministry of Health and Wellness ‘Every One Counts’ COVID Conversations Digital Town Hall, held on Thursday (June 11).

Minister Bartlett said testing of the visitors arriving from source markets, including the United States of America and Canada, will be done.

“Pretesting is not on the table, but testing is. All visitors and locals alike coming in as of June 15 will be tested,” he said.

Mr. Bartlett noted that between 5,000 and 6,000 visitors are expected to arrive in the island from June 15 to 30.

The Minister said that international partners have expressed interest in the protocols that Jamaica has developed for the industry, particularly the JamCovid19 App.

This application is an easy-to-use, centralised source for Government of Jamaica COVID-19 information and services.

In addition to providing the latest data and statistics related to COVID-19 in Jamaica and other countries around the world, the app allows persons to self-report their health status, book an appointment for testing if they are exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19, as well as request emergency services such as the police or ambulance.

“They are fascinated by the procedures and protocols that Jamaica has adopted, particularly the JamCovid19 application. They think this offers an excellent opportunity for persons coming to Jamaica to have a sense of their own readiness to make the journey, as it asks questions which will enable them to do that,” Mr. Bartlett said.

The Minister pointed out that it also provides host countries with important information on health profiles. This, he said, informs destination countries as to measures to be put in place for a seamless visitor experience.

Noting that COVID-19 has changed the industry, the Minister said Jamaica is leading the way in its safety protocols and use of technology to meet the expectations of the traveller.

“They are interested in knowing that the countries they go to practise proper safety and security measures, for example social distancing, and that masks [are worn]. They are interested in having the gadgets that secure them, as far as what is required for this new COVID security equipment arrangements,” Mr. Bartlett said.

“Jamaica is leading the way in terms of enabling a seamless and higher level of security for the new COVID visitors of the world,” he added.

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