During the course of this week, the Ministry of Health will be working towards strengthening its Ebola response. A statement from the ministry said that officials will be engaged in continued preparedness of the health care points of service for case management.
Focus will also be placed on both physical plants and training of health care workers. A team from the ministry will be meeting with the St. Lucia Hotel and Tourism Association (SLHTA) and representatives from the yachting sector on Monday October 20, 2014, to discuss preparations.
The statement said the Permanent Secretary and representatives of the Ebola Steering Committee will also meet with health oriented representative bodies (Nurses, SLMDA, Pharmacy, Laboratory, Fire, Allied health) on Tuesday October 21, 2014 for discussions on the Ebola Virus Disease as public health threat.
Further, the Ministry of Health will be presenting to Parliament a progress report on its Ebola preparedness on Thursday, October 23, 2014.
Minister of Health Alvina Reynolds will also accompany Prime Minister Dr. Kenny Anthony to Cuba, to explore feasible opportunities for the strengthening of preparations for the response Ebola.
Given the extent of the outbreak of Ebola affecting Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone, on Wednesday, October 15 St. Lucia declared that it will prohibit persons from travelling to Saint Lucia. All visitors from Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone will be denied entry into Saint Lucia until further notice.
Despite the fact that the President of Nigeria has declared that Nigeria is Ebola free, visitors from Nigeria will be required to present a recent medical certificate which clears him/her of the virus, in addition to a VISA to be allowed entry into Saint Lucia.
The Prime Minister said the Government of Saint Lucia continues to monitor the outbreak and has allocated resources to prepare for any possible threat. Recent events in Dallas, Texas have prompted a heightened awareness and necessitate strong action to ensure that Saint Lucia is protected.