Press conference hosted by Prime Minister Mia Amor Mottley – April 8th, 2021. (PMO)

Government will do whatever is necessary to verify the credentials of vaccinations received by visitors to the island.

Prime Minister Mia Amor Mottley gave this assurance during the question and answer segment of a press conference held this evening at Ilaro Court.

“Every country has its own credentials and we are hoping that the World Health Organization or other regional bodies will come up with one that is universally acceptable. But, what we have to do and that’s one of the reasons why we’re not opening up tomorrow or next week with these protocols… is to ensure that we know what are the acceptable protocols, what is the standard I should say that has been used for vaccination, from the particular countries where persons visit us from,” Ms. Mottley stated.

She added: “Secondly, we have to also continue to recognise that this is a moving thing, and as Minister of Health will tell you that the discussions as to the type of proof that is necessary internationally has still to be completed, so this may change going forward.”

Ms. Mottley also spoke about the proposed entry protocols for vaccinated visitors to the island, which include arriving with a negative PCR test conducted within the last 72 hours prior to arrival, as well as having a COVID-19 PCR test on the day after arrival,

“In doing this reopening, the protocols that you will see will also make the point that we will keep managing, on a very close basis, entries for persons who come from countries that are high risk, medium risk and low risk.

“And to the extent that persons are coming out of a country within the last 21 days that is high risk, then we will require a different protocol for them than for other persons, and the protocol makes that absolutely clear,” she explained.

The Prime Minister stressed that the safety of residents and visitors was the primary focus when determining protocols, and expressed the hope that when there was an increase in the number of visitors returning to the island that Barbadians, who are known for their hospitality, “will continue to exhibit those aspects of hospitality that have given us that reputation for being hospitable to those who visit us”.

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