Removing COVID entry requirement ill-advised and reckless – Guy
Opposition Spokesperson on Health and Wellness, Dr Morais Guy, says the People's National Party (PNP) is opposed to removing the COVID-19 pre-test requirement for travellers entering Jamaica.
Guy said the opposition would also not support the relaxation of the indoor mask-wearing requirement, which the government does not intend to extend beyond April 15.
He said it is unwise for the government to adopt such a stance as there is a continued risk from the COVID-19 Omicron sub-variant BA2, which persists in some jurisdictions from where Jamaica gets the majority of its visitors.
“Several countries are still facing an Omicron wave and removing the pre-test requirement for entry into Jamaica is ill-advised and reckless,” he charted.
He said there is an argument of cost for the pre-test, but Jamaica only requires the inexpensive antigen test to satisfy the protocol requirement.
Therefore, this claim should not be used to justify removing the pre-test protocol for entering Jamaica, Guy is asserting.
The opposition spokesman said the government should reconsider its current approach to mask-wearing and the pre-test requirement for travel.
“Furthermore, with only 24% of the population vaccinated, the new policy would directly threaten our seniors, who are predisposed to complications from COVID-19 due to the high likelihood of comorbidities.”
Guy said instead of relaxing the requirements, the government should mandate that mask-wearing be maintained and enforced for indoor spaces such as schools, businesses, places of worship and entertainment.
He reminded the government that the World Health Organization (WHO) has maintained that the pandemic is not over.
“With the ever-increasing numbers of variants being discovered, mask-wearing as a simple public health measure be maintained.”
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