Two French St Martin residents test negative for coronavirus
Tests for the coronavirus (COVID-19) have returned negative for two persons who were suspected of having the virus in French Saint Martin.
This was confirmed during the late hours of March 1 by ARS Guadeloupe, which is the Health Agency of Guadeloupe, Saint Martin, and St Barthelemy.
The two French Saint Martin residents had returned from vacation in L’Oise, France on February 28.
Meanwhile, three cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed as positive in the northern islands by the Pasteur laboratory of Guadeloupe which is now able to do tests.
The positive cases include a resident of Saint Bartholomew and his visiting parents.
The resident of Saint Bartholomew remains confined to his home with daily surveillance while the parents are in isolation in Saint Martin.
The Prefecture de Saint Barthelemy et de Saint-Martin states to date there are no possible or confirmed cases in Guadeloupe.
As fears mount with the presence of positive cases, French politician, Saint Martin community president, Daniel Gibbs says preventative measures will be taken to safeguard the community of Saint Martin and its Region of School Works.
In a statement Mr Gibbs says from today, March 2, lotions will be made available in schools and school restaurants so that students and staff could wash and disinfect their hands regularly.
He says beyond the measures taken by the Community, it is up to everyone to take the necessary care.
The Community of Saint-Martin will also install solutions in its public reception places.
Dutch side St Maarten has activated its Emergency Operations Centre in connection with the two confirmed coronavirus cases on French Saint Martin.
Prime Minister Silveria Jacobs said the two persons are currently in isolation at hospital and will remain there for 14 days.
There are zero cases of suspected or confirmed coronavirus cases on Dutch Sint Maarten at this time.
Prime Minister Jacobs has urged citizens not to panic, to stay calm and take preventative hygiene measures at home, school and on the job.
In the event COVID-19 does reach the island, she notes the St Maarten Medical Centre has the capacity to handle four COVID-19 cases.
Should there be more than that, the government of Sint Maarten has reached out to its international and Kingdom partners for capacity and resource assistance should that be necessary.
Photo: (Prime Minister Silveria Jacobs on March 1 with Government Epidemiologist Eva Lista De Weever, Dr Samay Nadery from St Maarten Medical Centre, Ministry of TEATT Secretary-General, Miguel De Weever and Head of St Maarten Tourist Bureau, May-Ling Chun.)
The nearby Caribbean island Saba, through its public health department states there are currently no suspected or confirmed Covid-19 cases on Saba.
The Heath Department notes it is monitoring the situation with St Bart’s and French St Martin.
The Governor’s Office in Anguilla says although there are no suspected or confirmed COVID-19 cases in Anguilla, the situation is dynamic and rapidly evolving.
It notes the cases from St Martin and the Dominican Republic show that the risk to the Caribbean remains that of imported cases.
The Governor’s Office says Anguilla’s Ministry of Health and Social Development has not been able to get further information directly from French officials in St Martin or Guadeloupe despite concerted efforts to do so.
The island’s Health Ministry is continuing to work with key partners to prevent the importation and spread of the virus in Anguilla.