Sunday 27 September, 2020

Scared to test COVID-19 positive & isolate abroad? Travel to Barbados

A visitor at Barbados' Grantley Adams International Airport (GAIA)

A visitor at Barbados' Grantley Adams International Airport (GAIA)

A COVID-19 positive result may not have to signal the end of your dream vacation in Barbados.

Barbados is one destination that will soon be granting persons who test positive for COVID-19 on their second test but are asymptomatic the option to self isolate in luxury and comfort at their own expense.

The ability to self-isolate if COVID-positive, asymoptomatic and deemed "healthy" by Barbados' Health Ministry will come into play from September 19, 2020.

3 Things travellers to Barbados must know now

1. PCR test

Travellers from high-risk and medium-risk countries must be tested by an approved medical facility for COVID-19 and travel with proof of their negative result. Barbados considers the PCR test to be the gold standard and mandates such.

2. Mandatory quarantine

All travellers from high-risk* countries must quarantine for 14 days. However, there is the option for a second test five to six days after the first COVID-19 negative PCR test result. If this is negative, the visitor or returning national or resident may go about their business on island, but if he or she tests positive, isolation begins.

3. Isolation

Prior to September 19, if a traveller to Barbados tested positive for COVID-19 on arrival or on second testing, he or she had to isolate at the government facility at Harrison Point in St Lucy. This is no longer the only available option for COVID-positive patients who are asymptomatic. Self-isolation at an approved facility is now a second option.

So how much expense would a person incur in Barbados if they opted for this?

1. They must pay for their stay.

Should a person test positive for COVID19 in Barbados they may request the option to self-isolate at a designated isolation-hotel or isolation-villa or other government approved isolation-property at their own expense.

2. They will pay for security

The isolation-property must contract the services of the approved security company for the period of time of such isolation with the associated expenses charged to the account of the property occupant.

3. They must pay for their medical services

Medical support services approved by the Ministry of Health & Wellness must be contracted at the expense of the patient to monitor their condition in accordance with clinical protocols.

4. They must be traced (If the trace bracelet carries a separate cost has not been disclosed as yet)

Persons must sign a consent release which also states their acceptance for information on their movements during self-isolation to be shared with the Ministry of Health and Wellness by an approved security company.

A bracelet and tracing app are on the verge as well. In this case, the patient will have to wear a bracelet.

The management of self-isolation in a government approved isolation facility will work in conjunction with the soon to be implemented BIMSAFE app and contact tracing bracelet.


Editor's Note: An earlier version of this story stated that citizens from medium-risk countries also had to quarantine for 14 days if they had a valid negative PCR test result, this however changes from September 14 as well.

• Persons travelling from Medium-Risk countries who arrive with a valid negative 
COVID-19 PCR test result will be permitted to leave the airport after clearance by 
Immigration, Customs and Port Health Officials.
• Those persons travelling from Medium-Risk countries will be monitored daily for the 
onset of symptoms for a period of seven days. Effective September 14th, persons will be 
required to take a second COVID-19 PCR test. If persons refuse the 2nd test they will be 
subject to quarantine for 7 days.
•If you test positive for COVID-19 while in Barbados, you may request from the Ministry 
of Health and Wellness the option to self-Isolate at a designated isolation-villa or isolation 
hotel under strict stipulations that must be signed as accepted and proven to be in place, 
alternatively you will be transported to an alternative accommodation for isolation, where 
you’ll stay until you’ve recovered. Upon recovery, you can resume your vacation or you 
may return home.

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