As Jamaica struggles to offer COVID-19 testing for residents, along with all vacationers from Canada and the US, a whole bunch of Jamaican residents and guests have been turning to unauthorized personal labs and people for the service.
Lately, the UK, United States, and Canada, Jamaica’s three largest tourism markets, introduced journey protocols that require all incoming vacationers to current a destructive COVID-19 take a look at earlier than being allowed entry. The brand new journey necessities have been a pressure on small nations like Jamaica, which should not have the sources to offer testing for its residents, along with a whole bunch of hundreds of vacationers.
Delano Seiveright, a strategist within the Ministry of Tourism, beforehand said that Jamaica is having problem assembly the demand as a result of richer nations are shopping for up a majority of the testing sources.
Talking at a digital press convention on Monday, the island’s well being and wellness minister, Dr. Christopher Tufton expressed concern in regards to the rising black market, saying that there have been plenty of “unauthorized pop-up testing websites charging charges which are astronomically excessive when in comparison with the price of these take a look at kits.”
The Jamaica Gleaner reported that personal well being services have been partnering with native resorts to supply PCR assessments to vacationers for as a lot as US$300 (J$43,000). “The costs being quoted for these assessments vary from US154 (J$22,000) to J$43,000, whereas antigen assessments can value anyplace between US$45 (J$6,500) and $118 (J$17,000) privately,” the report said.
“I’d not advise anybody to take any drug or service from an entity or particular person with no legitimacy since you by no means know what you’re going to get. Typically, it could not work out in your favor,” Dr. Tufton mentioned.
He reiterated the necessity for these providing the assessments to be licensed or accredited by the ministry.
In response to the testing requirement imposed by the three main international locations, the island’s ministry of well being has been ramping up its capability for testing. There are presently seven personal laboratories protecting 10 areas that present antigen testing, and 5 personal labs using six areas throughout the island that provide PCR testing. Free testing can be offered via the ministry of well being.
To help the federal government in assembly the demand, main resort chains like Sandals Resorts and Palace Resorts have additionally been providing COVID-19 testing to their visitors. Sandals’ testing is complimentary via March thirty first, whereas Palace’s testing comes at a free if there are greater than two visitors in a room.
Click on right here to see different Jamaican resorts offering on-site COVID-19 testing.
Tufton mentioned that whereas he understands the eagerness to safe testing, “the truth is that if the world had a fast repair, we might not have COVID-19 lasting so lengthy and there wouldn’t be so many individuals dying. There’s no fast repair for a worldwide public well being menace.”