We Are Ready

―Region prepared to deal with Coronavirus – CARICOM Chair, PM Mottley

DPI, Guyana, Tuesday February 4, 2020 

Ministers of Health from across the region were on Monday briefed by the Caribbean Public Health Agency, (CARPHA), and the Pan-American Health Organisation, (PAHO), on the new strain of the Coronavirus.

The meeting also centred largely on the region’s preparedness in case of any eventuality, according to Chairperson of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), Prime Minister of Barbados, the Hon. Mia Mottley.

Mia 4

CARICOM Chair, Prime Minister of Barbados, the Hon. Mia Mottley and HE Irwin LaRocque, Secretary-General of CARICOM.

The new CARICOM Chair, who wrapped up a one-day visit to Guyana on Monday, said there was no need for panic over the virus.

“The aim is ensuring the region can protect, first and foremost its population but at the same time ensuring that panic does not beset our people. History has shown that panic does not assist the resolution of these matters,” PM Mottley stated

She explained that going into panic mode could cause the region’s economies and societies to implode. Adding that CARICOM will take an evidence-based approach on the matter and this will guide the appropriate response to any imminent risks.

“We need to equally contextualize it against other public health concerns and not be taken in by those who would want a rush to judgement that may lead to difficulty of our own societies and economies,” PM Mottley noted.

The CARICOM Chair said this matter would have to be dealt with daily because of the fast movement and nature of what “we” are confronting.

“So, I look forward to a report within the next few days from the ASG and from COHSOD, The Council for Human and Social Development, as to what is being recommended as the bare minimum which we must confront as we seek to protect our communities,” she added.

The CARICOM Chair noted that any country is free to do what it wants, however with the single domestic space that exists in CARICOM, governments must work to protect this.

PM Mottley said the Joint Regional Communication Centre set up by CARICOM can be used by the Member States to do real-time checks of passengers coming into the region through Interpol and the US Department of Homeland Security.


COVID-19 Alert!

Coronavirus disease spreads primarily through contact with an infected person when they cough or sneeze. It also spreads when a person touches a surface or object that has the virus on it, then touches their eyes, nose, or mouth. We urge citizens to practice good hygiene and social or physical distancing also adhere to the guidelines provided by the Ministry of Health, Guyana.