The Prime Minister of St Lucia, Allen Chastanet, said that at least two hotels would be used as quarantine facilities, for residents returning home from countries with a high number of coronavirus cases.
Chastanet made the announcement while speaking at a press conference on Friday (March 20) about the coronavirus.
The PM said that the government made the decision, as it continues to look for ways to increase the number of space available for quarantining.
Chastanet noted that the aim of his administration and the Ministry of Health is to prevent against the community spread of the virus.
“The second part of this is to improve the facilities that we have available, specifically to deal with corona, I know the CMO will speak specifically to them; but one is to be able to increase the number of space that we have for quarantining,”said Chastanet.
“So as an example, we have St Lucians returning from Martinique, over the weekend, and we have been able to make arrangements with two hotels to be dedicated as quarantine areas,” he added.
According to the PM, one of the hotels will also be used as an isolation facility.
The PM explained that the time had come for those coming from countries with known outbreaks to be placed in to administered quarantine as opposed to self -quarantine.
He further explained that, only those that test positive for the coronavirus would be placed in isolation.
The PM also used the occasion to acknowledge that the tourism industry would be taking a major hit from the virus, confirming that a part from hotel closures, several airlines had announced that they would also be suspending services to the island.