BVI News

Preparation needed! Tech being used to manage COVID spread when tourism reopens

Premier Andrew Fahie

Premier Andrew Fahie has said the December 1 date to reopen the British Virgin Islands to tourism is to allow the territory sufficient time to have all the necessary systems in place to ensure a safe reopening process.

Speaking at the launch of the BVI Tourist Board’s rebranding initiative on Monday, the Premier said the measures will incorporate the usage of technology and rigourous testing.

He said reopening local tourism comes with a great risk so technology will help to minimize the spread of COVID-19, should it seep into the territory. 

“The concentration must be to use the technology through a simulation prior, to demonstrate that the technology will complement the science to greatly assist us in reopening the safest way humanly possible,” the Premier stated.

“Through our requisite officials, we have to use contact tracing methods available through technology, where we would test and retest the system prior to our reopening. That is why we need the time to ensure the measures that are going to be put in place are working effectively,” he added.

Stakeholders must work together

Fahie, who has portfolio responsibility for tourism, further said all the stakeholders must work together and cooperate with the authorities if the welcoming of tourists back in the territory is to become a reality.

“All boards, agencies and sectors of government, the private sector and the public will be engaged so that no one will be left out, so we can explain the measures to be rolled out and get further input because we are in this together,” Premier Fahie said.

He added: “We will meet with BVICCHA, car rental companies, hoteliers, personnel from Crafts Alive, airline operators, the marine sector, taxi operators, restaurant owners, villa operators; no business will be left behind.”

Premier Fahie said the BVI has only one shot at getting this venture right and appealed to all businesses and the public to abide by the relevant COVID-19 protocols to minimize any spread of the virus should additional cases arise.

COVID-19 Stats

Confirmed cases – 71
Active cases – 9
Recoveries – 61
Deaths – 1
Number of Persons Tested – Over 4,400

Copyright 2020 BVI News, Media Expressions Limited. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or distributed.

21 Comments

Disclaimer: BVI News and its affiliated companies are not responsible for the content of comments posted or for anything arising out of use of the comments below or other interaction among the users.

  1. Interesting says:

    Technology should have been used since June instead of spending these ridiculous amount quarantine.

    Had you taken a more practical approach i.e. use of technology, negative test upon arrival, etc. our economy would have been in a way better position.

    Like 31
    Dislike 3
    • ShutUP says:

      @Interesting, can you tell us what tech he is speaking of or what tech was available in june

      Like 4
      Dislike 4
      • @ShutUP says:

        Based on how our government is operating I am 100% certain it would be an app that almost every country has adopted. Our government is not innovative enough to develop a bespoke technological system. So perhaps you should shut the h**l up.

        Like 6
        Dislike 2
    • Hmmm says:

      Air Alitalia is offering Covid free flights. 30 minute Covid test given to passengers prior to boarding. You would think a Territory can obtain these same test kits and test each person entering the Territory. By the time those wonderful smiling faces of immigration and customs staff have finished processing arrivals, test results will be ready. By the way the airline does the test for free. Can’t wait to see what the Belonger charges for the test.

  2. Nice says:

    Nice speech that said nothing. Simply explain the protocol that a tourist will need to follow. You obviously have determined that since you “need to train the stakeholders”. Why is this a secret? Is it going to be like St. Lucia. Provide a negative test from your home country and test on arrival? Will there be restrictions on tourists depending on their home location? C’mon people stop this nonsense. You’ve had 6 months to plan and the only thing you came up with is BVILOVE? How original was that. Certainly didn’t use any Madison Ave marketing for that. More like kindergarten korner.

    Like 34
    Dislike 3
  3. vg resident says:

    For me to make airline reservation I need to know that the ferries to/from STT will be allowed to run. Also need to know costs and certainly NO quarantine. That would be a deal breaker.

    Like 33
    Dislike 2
  4. Smiley says:

    What about permit holders, would they be allowed back in before December 1?

    Like 10
    Dislike 1
  5. Smiley says:

    Will permit holders be able to reenter before December 1

    Like 10
  6. Wow says:

    With all due respect Hon. Premier, what preparation are you talking about? We have had 7 months to prepare for this! Our competitors are opened with protocols in place! Here we are in September, saying we opening in December and nothing else? The Opposition put out a general plan months ago and you totally ignored them. BVI are the laughing stock of the Region right now with this one-man horse and pony show. Businesses have to spend extra marketing dollars adjusting radio ads, online updates, graphics because we are changing curfews every week and every time we get a few cases. Some businesses remain closed with no idea of when they can reopen, no way to plan and on top of all that the business stimulus that was promised from last week still hasn’t materialized. Meanwhile everyone is sitting around quiet as a lamb because they are scared to offend the big bad VIP. We get the Government we deserve, bend over and keep taking it I guess.

    Like 39
    Dislike 5
  7. Crap says:

    Where is the reopening plan? Where is it? Why are we allowing this man to continue to insult our intelligence. He comes and drops bits and pieces without presenting anything in detail.

    Like 25
    Dislike 3
  8. Dman says:

    You need a plan with specifics, and soon. Only an idiot or a dreamer would make plans to see their homes or visit the territory without knowing the protocols, restrictions and transportation plans.

    Like 20
  9. Hmmm says:

    Trying hard not to mention the word vaccines but we waiting on you.

    Like 1
    Dislike 2
  10. HeresTheThing says:

    All of this underscores importance of following Government’s declared protocols – distancing, masks, hygiene. Pier Park management needs to check on protocols at some of their stores. There is at least one where customers are complying with masks but none of the staff is wearing masks.

    Like 4
    Dislike 1
  11. Tongue Fu says:

    These 6 months should have been used to come up with a comprehensive plan inclusive of safety protocols and electronic tracking systems. Then the next two months should be about marketing.

    Well sah!

    Like 8
    Dislike 2
  12. islandguy says:

    There are 52 total hospital beds on Tortola. There are almost 30,000 BVI inhabitants. With a virus that has an infection rate of .2% that would mean that 51 people could be hospitalize in intensive care at one time, using 100% of all hospital beds. Its just math people. That’s why the government instituted the shut down/masks. In a worst case scenario (which may or may not have occurred), the BVI would have been in a total crisis. No government official ever wants to tell a family that there is no room for mom in the ICU. It was all about flattening the curve and making sure anyone that needs care could get it.

    Like 4
    Dislike 15
    • @Island Guy says:

      Stop talking NONSENSE!!! If god forbid two safari buses filled with tourists got into an accident the same would apply, so should we stop tourism as a result? You sound very foolish! COVID has turned everyone into a flaming idiot, acting as if nothing else kills people anymore. People sit and inhale the raw burning at pock wood pond, deal with raw sewage in CGBay/EELL, eat the processed junk in the supermarkets, drink rum day and night and we are here panicking over COVID. We have a choice, either open up safely with protocols and deal with COVID as it comes, or keep hiding like idiots while everyone goes broke and hungry! Stop with the stupid fear mongering and learn some common sense. Our main hospital has two massive empty floors and we also have the old hospital annex with plenty of space. If additional beds/equipment were an issue, we have the space for it and the UK have always offered medical equipment so there are ZERO EXCUSES! Time to open the f***ing place so that people can make ends meet.

      Like 16
      Dislike 3
      • **? says:

        Equipments, beds and space dont treat sick people. Those are not the only requirements needed at a healthy care facility.
        As for quarantine, its absolutely necessary for everyone’s safety for protection from selfish and irresponsible possibly infected people.

    • Tongue Fu says:

      @islandguy

      Quit with the excuses. They budgeted 12 million for the Covid fight where did that go? Why don’t we have more beds? Why don’t we have more ventilators?

      Nobody is buying what you are selling.

      Like 5
      Dislike 1
  13. Haha says:

    All of a sudden people want to see plans. They voted without seeing plans for 8 years and when there were plans It was just a waste of paper and time with manifestos full of lies and broken promises. Most procedural plans aren’t made public but that doesn’t mean that they don’t exist. Where are all the BVI plans for the last few years? Too many salty people still carrying grudges from last election. Every day their problems evolve. It went from cancel curfew to relax curfew to open bars /nightclubs, open schools, to open borders and everytime government did what they want they found another “problem” to try and put the government down.

    Like 37
    Dislike 4

Leave a Comment

Shares