State of Emergency Update
The Cabinet reiterated its decision to:
1.i. Expand the curfew window from 5:00 am to 11:00 pm daily, continuing the gradual steps toward normalcy;
1.ii. Continue to restrict daily beach usage from 5:00 am to—no later than—7:00 pm, or when darkness falls;
1.iii. Extend the State of Emergency to July 31, 2020, upon its June 12 expiry date;
1.iv. Continue to rely on PCR testing to determine a person’s eligibility to be released from quarantine sooner than 14 days, as ordered by the Quarantine Authority; rapid Sofia Tests may also be used when supplies become available;
1.v. Await the shipment of more than 20,000 swabs; however, a resupply of re-agents have been shipped and are at the hospital. The object is to ensure that tests can be carried-out on all those entering Antigua and Barbuda and anyone who may exhibit symptoms of Covid-19 infection;
1.vi. Intensify the education of the population by public announcements on all media, insisting on: a) the wearing of masks, and b) the practicing of social distancing, and c) the warning against complacency and non-compliance with the protocols and rules. A fine for those caught in public not wearing masks is included in the law.
1.vii. Continue the welcoming of returning nationals and to seek their full collaboration in keeping their family, household members, friends and others safe from unwittingly contracting the Covid-19 disease;
1.viii. Deepen the effort to inform tourists, before arriving and upon arrival, of the need to practice the published protocols while on-island that will keep both visitors and residents safe from Covid-19 infection.
Notes from Cabinet: (pt2) The Cabinet invited the Chief Medical Officer, and the Nurse with the responsibility to follow-up the returning nationals. The Cabinet thanked both for the very hard work which has been invested by them both to keep the country safe. Only one person continues to be infected, although his last test proved negative, and a second consecutive test will also be sent off the CARPHA to confirm that he is free of the virus. He has survived 9 weeks of infection. The young girl is now free to proceed home, the Cabinet learned.
-The Minister of Health shared the protocols that govern a plethora of businesses including food services, fitness centers, casinos, public transportation. The protocols are intended to guide these businesses down a path of safety and security which would lead to reduction of infections by Covid-19 patients, whether symptomatic or a-symptomatic. They have been shared with several CARICOM states who sought technical advice from Antigua and Barbuda as the first to open its borders to international flights.
Notes from Cabinet: The Cabinet reviewed the state of affairs in Antigua and Barbuda in light of the Covid-19 global pandemic, the curfew, and the successes scored from the opening-up of the country since June 1, 2020.