Twenty-two Vincentian workers returned home from the British Virgin Islands (BVI) yesterday at the Argyle International Airport (AIA).

The group was welcomed on arrival by Chief Medical Officer Dr. Simone Keizer-Beache as well as other health professionals who walked them through registration and health checks.

Dr. Keizer-Beache said the local authorities had received information on these persons prior to their arrival in St. Vincent and the Grenadines.
She said they were required to submit their names and passport numbers to verify that they are Vincentians and then a process was carried out to determine whether or not their homes were appropriate for quarantine.

The CMO disclosed that for persons who did not meet the requirements for home quarantine, the authorities found suitable accommodation for them. Before going through Immigration at the AIA, the group was registered and basic checks were administered such as “temperature checks. They were also asked about signs and symptoms of COVID 19, including cough, fever, shortness of breath, and any possible exposure to anyone who might have been COVID19-positive. The Vincentians also had their blood taken for a rapid COVID-19 antibody test. Dr. Keizer-Beache said, if during the initial assessment anyone was found to have a temperature, they were swabbed immediately for the PCR.

Following the checks, the CMO said the group had their hands cleansed before going through Immigration. Persons collected their luggage and were allowed to leave in pre-arranged transportation to their homes” or to quarantine sites prepared for them. She added that persons were instructed where they should sit in the arranged transportation and ensure that their “masks never come off until they arrived home or at the quarantine facility.

Minister of Health Luke Browne said that of the 22 persons who returned from the BVI yesterday, 18 were allowed to quarantine in their homes or in pre-arranged accommodation for that purpose and four were sent to a quarantine facility.