Skip to main content
10 Feb 2020 | 09:48 AM UTC

Saint Lucia: Government imposes travel restrictions amid coronavirus outbreak as of early February

Government of Saint Lucia imposes travel restrictions for individuals who have recently traveled to mainland China as of early February; further international spread of the virus expected over coming weeks

entry/exit
health
LCA

Event

On Tuesday, February 4, the Government of Saint Lucia imposed new travel restrictions on individuals who have recently traveled to mainland China amid the ongoing novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) outbreak. Non-nationals are now barred from entering any port of entry on Saint Lucia if they have traveled to mainland China within the last 14 days, including travel in transit or originating from China. Saint Lucian nationals who have similarly traveled to mainland China over the last 14 days will be quarantined for 14 days upon their return to Saint Lucia.

As of Friday, February 7, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) had not reported any confirmed cases of 2019-nCoV in Saint Lucia.

Further international spread of the 2019-nCoV virus is to be expected over the coming days and weeks.

Context

The first case of 2019-nCoV was reported on December 31 and the source of the outbreak has been linked to a wet market in Wuhan (Hubei province, China). Human-to-human and patient-to-medical staff transmission of the virus have been confirmed. Many of the associated fatalities have been due to pneumonia caused by the virus.

Cases of the virus have been confirmed in 25 countries and territories worldwide. Virus screening and quarantining measures are being implemented at airports worldwide, as well as extensive travel restrictions. On January 30, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared that the ongoing novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) outbreak is a "public health emergency of international concern."

Pneumonia symptoms include dry cough, chest pain, fever, and labored breathing. Pneumonia can be contagious and can be transmitted from human to human. The influenza virus, or the flu, is a common cause of viral pneumonia.

Advice

Potentially impacted travelers are advised to monitor the situation, confirm travel itineraries and consider rebooking options, if needed, and adhere to all instructions issued by local authorities and their home governments. Individuals are advised to take precautionary measures to reduce their risk of contracting the virus:

  • Avoid all contact with animals (dead or alive); avoid eating animal products that are undercooked; avoid all markets where animals are sold
  • Avoid all close contact with people displaying symptoms of the disease (e.g. difficulties breathing)
  • Frequently wash hands, wear a face mask
  • Individuals within China developing symptoms of pneumonia are advised to seek medical attention, avoid contact with other people, and wash hands regularly
  • Adhere to all instructions issued by local authorities and their home governments
  • Travelers returning from China developing symptoms of pneumonia are advised to call emergency services before going to the doctor or hospital to avoid spreading the disease.