Connect with us

Caribbean News

PRESS RELEASE: ZIKA VIRUS RECORDED IN TURKS AND CAICOS

Published

on

Mosquito-borne diseases like Dengue, Chikungunya and the recent emergence of Zika virus has been of serious concern in the Caribbean region including the Turks and Caicos Islands.

 

The Turks and Caicos Government in partnership with the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) and the Pan American Health Organization/World Health Organization (PAHO), the Airport Authority, Tourist Board, Turks and Caicos Hotel and Tourism Association, TCI Hospital and other local and regional stakeholders has taken extensive measures to protect our residents and visitors from the threat of diseases.

 

The Ministry of Health, Agriculture and Human Services has held several joint high level meetings with our regional and local partners to ensure that all available resources are accumulated and every measure possible is taken to ensure that our country implements the strongest possible Zika virus preparedness and response plan to address this issue. Thus far, the following steps have been taken:

 

  • Increased countrywide clean up campaigns, fogging exercises and premises inspections;
  • Expanded surveillance efforts;
  • Provided regular training sessions and situational updates to health professionals; and
  • Stepped up public awareness campaigns.

 

Since 2007, 65 countries have reported cases of Zika. Of the 65 countries, approximately 22 countries are located in the Caribbean region. As of Friday, July 22, 2016, the Turks and Caicos Islands has recorded 5 cases of Zika Virus. Three (3) of these cases are associated with a recent history of travel to areas where cases of Zika has been reported. The other 2 are being investigated. To date, there is no epidemiological evidence of in country transmission associated with the two non-travel related cases. Measures have been taken to ensure that these cases are managed and contained, and all affected persons are recovering.

 

Zika is a viral illness, which is spread by the bite of an infected Aedes aegypti mosquito. This mosquito is found throughout the Americas, including the TCI. Most persons who contract Zika are often not aware that they have the illness as they may not have any symptoms. Symptoms of Zika are similar to Dengue and Chikungunya and appear between four to seven days after someone has been bitten by an infected mosquito. These symptoms include mild fever, skin rash, conjunctivitis (also known as pink eye), muscle or joint pain, and general malaise.

 

There is no specific medication to treat Zika and there are currently no vaccines to prevent the illness. However, symptoms of Zika can be managed by:

 

  • Getting plenty of rest
  • Drinking fluids to prevent dehydration
  • Taking medicines, such as acetaminophen, or paracetamol, to relieve fever and pain.
  • Do not take aspirin and other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as Aleve or Ibuprofen unless advised by a doctor.

 

The concern with Zika is a growing body of evidence regarding the connection between infection with Zika during pregnancy and possible abnormalities in the newborn. In addition, there has been an association with Zika and other neurological complications such as Guillain-Barre syndrome.

 

To protect yourself and your family, the Ministry advises persons in the TCI to take the following precautions:

 

  1. Prevent mosquito breeding in and around your home by keeping your environment clean (check your gutters and remove standing water from old flower vases, tires and other containers that might act as breeding sites such as water drums and barrels).
  2. Avoid being bitten by wearing loose long-sleeved shirts and long pants, applying insect repellents and using mosquito nets.
  3. Zika has been proven to be sexually transmitted therefore we recommend condom use.
  4. Pregnant women are advised to seek more information from their health provider at their next scheduled visit and not to travel to areas with Zika virus during pregnancy. If pregnant and you suspect that you have Zika, contact your healthcare provider immediately.
  5. Women and men who have been diagnosed with the Zika virus are advised to seek guidance from their health provider prior to planning a future pregnancy.

 

For more information, contact the Ministry of Health, Agriculture and Human Services on 338-3061 or 338-3058. The Ministry will keep the public informed with any new developments.

Continue Reading

Caribbean News

NATIONAL SECURITY SECRETARIAT INFORMATION NOTE ISSUED MAY 17, 2024

Published

on

May 21, 2024 – The Turks and Caicos Islands have clear laws prohibiting the possession of firearms and or ammunition without a licence and strict penalties in order to serve and protect the community. Our Firearms Ordinance, which was amended in 2022, states that:

No person (other than a licensed gunsmith in the course of his trade) shall have in his possession, discharge or use any firearm or ammunition unless he is the holder of a firearm licence with respect to such firearm, or in case of ammunition he is the holder of a licence for a firearm which takes that ammunition.

Firearm and/or ammunition offences carry a mandatory minimum custodial sentence of twelve years plus a fine. Where a court finds there are exceptional circumstances, the sentencing judge has discretion, under the law, to impose a custodial sentence and a fine that are fair and just in the circumstances of each case rather than impose the mandatory minimum.

The Chief Justice is advancing sentencing guidelines in respect of the application of exceptional circumstances. Wider work is also ongoing with criminal justice partners to review the efficiency and effectiveness of case progression, in driving justice outcomes.

It is the traveller’s responsibility to ensure their baggage is free of firearms and/or ammunition. Permission from an airline carrier does not constitute permission to bring firearms or ammunition into the Turks and Caicos Islands. Travellers are also strongly advised to search their luggage before they travel to the Turks and Caicos Islands to ensure they do not bring in forbidden items inadvertently. Such offences will result in arrest.

The Turks and Caicos Islands is a British Overseas Territory with a common law legal system, and reserves the right to enforce its laws. All persons, including visitors, must follow lawful process.

The Turks and Caicos Islands welcomes all visitors but reminds travellers that persons in the Turks and Caicos Islands do not have a constitutional right to carry firearms. Equally, the importation of firearms, ammunition (including stray bullets), and other weapons is strictly forbidden, unless licence to do so has been issued by the Commissioner of Police.

Continue Reading

Caribbean News

CTO to Focus on Aviation at Caribbean Week in New York

Published

on

New York (May 16, 2024) – Celebrating its 35th anniversary, the Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) is set to spotlight the future of Caribbean aviation during Caribbean Week in New York, scheduled for June 16-21, 2024, at the InterContinental Times Square in midtown Manhattan.

Under CTO’s annual theme “Connecting the Globe, Celebrating Diversity”, the week promises a diverse lineup of activities emphasizing innovation and connectivity.

A key feature of the premier event for travel industry professionals, journalists and members of the Caribbean Diaspora will be the Caribbean Airlift Forum.

Rosa Harris, Chairman of the CTO Board of Directors and Spokesperson for Caribbean Week, will moderate the forum. She emphasized the importance of this session as a critical platform for discussing the challenges and opportunities in Caribbean air transportation.

The session will cover topics including route development, aviation competitiveness, partnerships, infrastructure investment, regulatory frameworks, and market demand strategies. It aims to foster dialogue among airlines, airports, tourism authorities, and aviation ministries, enhancing connectivity and optimizing access to Caribbean destinations.

“In the wake of the pandemic, Caribbean aviation has shown remarkable resilience and adaptability, rebounding strongly in key areas. However, as we celebrate these gains during our Caribbean Week in New York, it’s crucial that we don’t become complacent,” stated Harris.

“We must continue to innovate and address the persistent challenges within intra-regional tourism, which, while recovering, remains a challenge for many of our destinations,” she continued. “Our focus at the Caribbean Airlift Forum is not only on celebrating our successes but also on critically analyzing our challenges to strengthen and diversify our connections to, from and across the region, ensuring a more robust and connected Caribbean.”

The week also features a Business and Tourism Marketing Symposium, the Caribbean Media Awards, and sessions focused on artificial intelligence, crisis communications, and multicultural marketing.

With the support of headline sponsor, the Bahamas Ministry of Tourism, Investments & Aviation; gold sponsors Cayman Islands Department of Tourism and the United States Virgin Islands Department of Tourism; and Diamonds International and the Caribbean Media Exchange, Caribbean Week in New York 2024 is poised to be a pivotal meeting for tourism professionals and stakeholders in the region and the Diaspora.

Continue Reading

Caribbean News

CHTA Launches Multi-Destination Media Trip to Showcase Caribbean Interconnectivity and Diversity

Published

on

May 21, 2024

 

The Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association (CHTA) is gearing up for its first multi-destination media trip, designed to illuminate the interconnectedness and diversity across the Caribbean. Scheduled from May 17 to 27, this initiative will showcase the vibrant cultures, breathtaking landscapes, and unique experiences spanning St. Lucia, Barbados, Jamaica and the Cayman Islands.

Nicola Madden-Greig, President of CHTA, expressed enthusiasm for the program and stressed its significance: “This initiative is a testament to the collaborative spirit and interconnected nature that define Caribbean tourism. Our goal is to showcase the diverse offerings of St. Lucia, Barbados, Jamaica and the Cayman Islands, inspiring travelers to explore the myriad experiences our region has to offer.” Although the Dominican Republic had to withdraw due to unforeseen circumstances, there are plans to include the nation in future endeavors of this nature.

Madden-Greig reiterated, “The Caribbean is often thought of as one homogenous place, so if you have seen one island you have seen the Caribbean. This trip will debunk that myth and truly showcase the diversity, mystique, and cultural prowess of our distinct islands. Just like you can explore many destinations in Europe having totally diverse experiences, the Caribbean offers the same opportunity.”

Developed in collaboration with the Jamaica Tourist Board, Jamaica Hotel & Tourist Association, Saint Lucia Tourism Authority, Cayman Islands Department of Tourism, and Cayman Islands Tourism Association, the itinerary promises an immersive experience. Participants will enjoy the stunning landscapes and beaches of St. Lucia, indulge in an exciting layover in Barbados, discover the culture and radiant beauty of Jamaica, and experience the iconic sites of the Cayman Islands.

Strategically timed to coincide with Caribbean Travel Marketplace from May 21 to 23 in Jamaica, the media trip aims to maximize the event’s networking opportunities. Journalists can enrich their coverage of the multi-destination experience with insights and connections from the region’s premier tourism conference.

Continue Reading

FIND US ON FACEBOOK

TRENDING