Friday 3 July, 2020

US Embassy sanitising premises after worker's 'positive COVID-19 test'

US Embassy in Kingston (Photo: US Embassy)

US Embassy in Kingston (Photo: US Embassy)

The US Embassy in Kingston says it is in the process of sanitising its premises to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) after a worker reportedly tested positive for the virus, becoming the second confirmed COVID-19 case in Jamaica.

"We are aware of reports of a COVID-19 case related to an Embassy Kingston employee.  Due to privacy concerns, we are not able to share additional information," the embassy said in a release Wednesday afternoon.

It noted that, in coordination with Jamaican authorities, the embassy is implementing "all appropriate measures to help control the spread of COVID-19" including the sanitising of the premises.

"Our Consular Section will not be providing routine services – including visa processing and American citizens services – until further notice.  US citizens who require emergency assistance should call 876-702-6000," the embassy said, adding that US citizens who decide to travel to Jamaica should review and follow the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s guidelines for the prevention of coronavirus.

Loop News reported earlier that several US Embassy workers were in self-quarantine after coming in close contact with someone who was reportedly in isolation at a health facility in the Corporate Area over concerns about COVID-19.  It is unclear whether that person is infected.

Health and Wellness Minister, Dr Christopher Tufton announced via social media on Wednesday that there was a second confirmed imported case of COVID-19 in Jamaica. He did not provide further details into the case.

On Tuesday, the health minister announced that a Jamaican woman who also holds UK citizenship had tested positive for COVID-19 days after she arrived in the island to attend a funeral, becoming the first confirmed case. 

COVID-19, which has already killed some 4,000 people worldwide and infected over 100,000, has triggered global concern.

While the outbreak is easing in China, where the virus was first detected, fast-growing clusters have turned up in South Korea, Japan, Iran and Italy, and the caseload is growing in the United States.

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