Severity: Critical Alert

Entry/Exit: Saint Lucia extends nationwide state of emergency, including 1900-0500 curfew, through May 31 due to COVID-19. Disruptions ongoing.

This alert affects Saint Lucia

This alert began 27 Apr 2020 10:18 GMT and is scheduled to expire 31 May 2020 23:59 GMT.

  • Incident: Restrictions
  • Location(s): Nationwide (map)
  • Time Frame: Through May 31
  • Impact: Severe business and commercial disruptions, increased security

Summary
The government of Saint Lucia has extended the island's state of emergency through May 31, as part of continued efforts to curb the spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19). Under the measure, the 1900-0500 curfew and closure of most nonessential businesses will continue until further notice. Outside of curfew hours, only two people per household will be allowed out, and only to restock food and essential items, such as fuel and appliances. Essential services will not be affected by the curfew. Hardware stores, home suppliers, and construction companies will be allowed to operate. Police will deploy to enforce the movement restrictions.

These measures are in addition to Saint Lucia's closure of its airports to all incoming commercial and private passenger flights and its seaports to all noncargo sailing vessels, until further notice. The measures in place will significantly impact business and transport on the island. All restrictions are subject to amendment at short notice.

Background and Analysis
The measures adopted by the government correspond with similar actions taken by other regional governments in recent days in response to the spread of 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
Follow all official instructions. Abide by national health and safety measures. Reconfirm all travel arrangements. Consider delaying traveling if experiencing symptoms associated with COVID-19, as they may prompt increased scrutiny and delays. Liaise with trusted contacts for further updates and guidance. Maintain contact with your diplomatic representation. Ensure contingency plans account for further disruptive measures or extensions of current restrictions. Reconsider and reconfirm nonemergency health appointments. Plan for queues and delays at available shopping centers.

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.


 


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