Written by 6:31 pm Travel

TOURISM AT RISK?: BHTA president stresses vigilance as COVID cases rise

NASSAU, BAHAMAS — Bahamas Hotel and Tourism Association (BHTA) President Robert Sands yesterday urged Bahamians to stay vigilant amid a big surge in COVID-19 cases.

This because the country recorded 330 new COVID-19 cases on Christmas day.

The wind is at our back and [we] must sustain the momentum and we’ve to be vigilant.

– BHTA President Robert “Sandy” Sands

Sands told Eyewitness News that with the tourism industry on the rebound and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently improving its travel advisory on this nation to Level 2, the country must proceed to construct on that momentum and protect its primary industry.

“We’re very grateful that The Bahamas has been upgraded to Level 2,” said Sands.

“Still, we’ve to stay vigilant. We’re seeing a big variety of new COVID-19 cases, although we usually are not seeing high levels of hospitalizations, which is a positive thing.

Robert “Sandy” Sands.

“We must proceed to implement the protocols — hand washing, social distancing, mask wearing — and encourage individuals who is probably not vaccinated to go and get vaccinated.”

Health and Wellness Minister Dr Michael Darville last week noted that adjustments could possibly be rolled out in the approaching days with respect to large social gatherings and tighter border control. 

Last week, the CDC reclassified its travel advisory on The Bahamas from Level 3 to Level 2. A Level 3 rating represents a high risk while Level 2 is moderate risk.

“The wind is at our back and [we] must sustain the momentum and we’ve to be vigilant,” Sands said.

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