Basseterre, St. Kitts, Thursday 19th March 2020–As regulators to the gateways of St. Kitts, the St. Christopher Air & Sea Ports Authority (SCASPA) has engaged in a number of proactive measures to ensure that the Authority’s entry points are equipped with the essentials to cope with the COVID 19 pandemic.
One of integral measures taken is the sensitization of the Authority’sStaff including all front-line workers. Since the widespread outbreak of the Novel COVID–19 (Coronavirus), SCASPA has collaborated with stakeholders to includethe Ministry of Health and NEMA to form part of a St. Kitts-Nevis National Pandemic Influenza and Virus Preparedness Program.
As part of this program, SCASPA’s in-house COVID -19 Sensitization Sessions targeted in the first instance, Robert Llewellyn Bradshaw International Airport staff, followed by the front-line staff of the entire Authority. Facilitators, Chief Medical Officer (CMO) Dr. Hazel Laws, Director of NEMA, Mr. Abdias Samuel and the Chief Environmental Health Officer, Mr. Alexander Riley convened the sessions to educate and update employees as to the Federation’s status as it relates to any confirmed cases of the Coronavirus, and to impart to employees the potential health risks they can be exposed to as front-end workers.
At the session Dr. Laws debunked prevalent false information and urged persons to remain calm, carry on with their daily routines and continue to listen out for updates on the virus.
With all that was reported and disseminated, the main focus was “the constant and efficient washing of hands,” this she said would “go a long way” in minimizing the risk of spread of the COVID 19 virus.
Other preparatory measures taken by SCASPA in the wake of the COVID 19 pandemic include stricter surveillance of passengers and crew at all SCASPA governed ports of entry to facilitate enforcement of the quarantine policy. All international flights and flights from regional hubs are being monitored. Accurate completion of question 17 of the St. Kitts-Nevis Immigration form is now an absolute requirement by Immigration for entry into the Federation.
- Heightened hygienic activities throughout the Authority with the increased installation/placement of hand sanitizer stations throughout the Authority, especially at high traffic areas (RLBIA, Basseterre Ferry Terminal, Port Zante Cruise Terminal, Cargo Operations).
- Cancellations of all social and other corporate related gatherings, such as Best in Class High School Quiz Competition, as a means of fostering social distancing.