Of 681 nationals who registered to return home thus far, 62 were turned down for not meeting the established protocols.
Hon. Carvin Malone, Minister for Health and Social Development, who made the disclosure explained that to date 681 registrations were submitted with 362 verified by Immigration and cleared for processing by Environmental Health.
“Sixty-two of the registrations did not meet the requirements established for individuals to re-enter the Territory during Phase 1 of the Restricted Border Re-Opening Plan. Of the 362 that have been cleared to re-enter under Phase, a quarter of the individuals have re-entered the Territory during the seven-day period (3 – 9 June 2020).
He said eighty-three more nationals are expected to arrive in the Territory by 13 June 2020 with 19 of these approved for government quarantine to date.
“Since the activation of Phase 1 of the Restricted Border Re-Opening Plan, attention has been focused on managing the risk of imported cases while simultaneously augmenting the health system and monitoring the workplace preventive measures that were implemented for the businesses that re-opened since the lifting of the 24 hour curfew,” he stated.
The Health Minister said the Health Emergency Operations Centre (HEOC) has flagged several issues related to the mandatory quarantine arrangements for persons who have been cleared to re-enter the Territory since 2 June 2020.
These include, discrimination against and eviction of returning nationals, who are subject to mandatory quarantine, by landlords due to fears and stigma around COVID-19.
“The need to limit the number of weekly arrivals based on the available private security complement and the rooms available in the government quarantine facilities,” he said.
Another emerging issue is building human resources capacity with the Ministry of Health and Social Development and wider Public Service to fully operationalize the transition from the Red Alert ‘Stamp It Out’ Phase to the Orange Alert ‘Manage It’ Phase of the Heath Emergency Operations Centre National Acton Plan against the COVID-19 Pandemic.