The Ministry of Health and Wellness has proposed new COVID-19 entry protocols that allow arriving passengers to present a rapid antigen test taken inside sooner or later of travel.
It’s the primary time such tests can be accepted on the borders and follows fervent pleas from tourism stakeholders for improvements to the system of entry under the pandemic protocols.
“Travellers are permitted to travel to Barbados with a sound negative Rapid COVID-19 PCR test OR Rapid Antigen test result done inside sooner or later prior to arrival in Barbados OR a negative RT-PCR COVID-19 test result done inside 3 days prior to arrival,” said an announcement released by the Barbados Tourism Marketing Inc.
In keeping with the statement, the accepted tests, should be taken at an accredited or recognised laboratory by a healthcare provider include nasopharyngeal, oropharyngeal, nasal, anterior nares, and mid-turbinate samples in addition to LAMP tests.
“Self-administered tests or home kits and tests using saliva samples will NOT be accepted,” the correspondence added.
The changes have emerged two weeks after the Barbados Hotel and Tourism Association (BHTA) called for the acceptance of Rapid Antigen tests on the borders.
On the time, BHTA Chairman Renee Coppin chided airport officials over an apparent lack of clarity and transparency regarding the systems which govern the entry of airline passengers.
In response, Minister of Tourism and International Transport Senator Lisa Cummins promised to interact public health officials and tourism stakeholders “throughout the shortest time”.
In recent weeks Government has significantly eased COVID-19 restrictions and there’s high anticipation that authorities could announce an extra leisure of measures over the weekend which could also inclue a choice on the hosting of the Crop Over festival this 12 months. (KS)