Severity: Critical Alert

Entry/Exit: Officials in Barbados order quarantine to any person entering the country through at least April 14. Nightly curfew remains in place.

This alert affects Barbados

This alert began 02 Apr 2020 18:17 GMT and is scheduled to expire 14 Apr 2020 23:59 GMT.

  • Event: COVID-19 Restrictions
  • Location(s): Nationwide (map)
  • Time Frame: Through at least April 14
  • Impact: Transport and business disruptions

Summary
On April 1, authorities in Barbados announced new restrictions, including a mandatory quarantine for any person entering the country, as part of the nation's efforts to curb coronavirus disease (COVID-19). Starting 0001 April 3 and until at least April 14, all persons arriving on the island from any nation by air or water will be placed in a government facility for 14 days as part of a mandatory quarantine. A nightly 2000-0600 curfew, as well as orders requiring all nonessential businesses to close and residents to stay at home except to perform essential tasks, have been in place since March 28 and will remain in force until at least April 14. Authorities have also increased restrictions on services and businesses that continue to operate, including reducing the time frame that grocery stores and pharmacies may remain open to 0900-1400. All beaches and parks will be closed, as will most government offices and places of worship, except for funeral services, weddings, and other religious services with a maximum of three people present.

Authorities may take additional measures in the coming days, especially if the spread of COVID-19 continues. The measures in place will significantly impact business and transport in the country, with larger than usual police presence in the streets. All restrictions are subject to amendment at short notice.

Background and Analysis
The measures taken by the Barbados government correspond with similar actions taken by other governments globally in recent weeks, in response to the spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19). COVID-19 is a viral respiratory disease caused by infection with the SARS-CoV-2 virus (previously known as 2019-nCoV). Symptoms occur 1-14 days following exposure (average of 3-7 days). These symptoms include fever, fatigue, cough, difficulty breathing, sometimes worsening to pneumonia and kidney failure - especially in those with underlying medical conditions. On March 11, the WHO declared the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak a pandemic.

Advice
Strictly heed the instructions of authorities. Avoid all nonessential operations in the areas impacted by the measures. Confirm appointments. Remain courteous and cooperative if approached and questioned by law enforcement officers.

Emphasize basic health precautions, especially frequent handwashing with soap and water, or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water are unavailable. Practice good coughing/sneezing etiquette (i.e., covering coughs and sneezes with a disposable tissue, maintaining distance from others, and washing hands). There is no evidence that the influenza vaccine, antibiotics, or antiviral medications will prevent this disease, highlighting the importance of diligent basic health precautions.

Resources
World Health Organisation (WHO): who.int

Government of Barbados - COVID-19 Updates: https://gisbarbados.gov.bb/covid-19/