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Persons in VI/USVI vaccine bubble must immediately return to VI

Persons in VI/USVI vaccine bubble must immediately return to VI

Virgin Islands (VI) health authorities are warning that persons who take up the VI/USVI vaccination bubble offer must immediately return to the VI on taking their first dose of the vaccine or face penalties.

This was revealed in a Government Information Service (GIS) report by the Private Secretary to the Ministry of Health and Social Development, Ms Tashi O'Flaherty-Maduro, on the revamped vaccination bubble initiative for persons who want another vaccine option outside of the locally offered AstraZeneca vaccine.

“Staying in the bubble means that persons will travel to Cruz Bay, St John for vaccination purposes only, and return to the BVI immediately following the vaccination process.

“There would be no flexibility for interaction with persons on St John, with exception to the bubble stakeholders, thereby reducing the risk of exposure."

O'Flaherty-Maduro added that stops to other US territories, including St Thomas, will not be allowed.

Ms Tashi O'Flaherty-Maduro indicated that the Ministry of Health and Social Development has therefore partnered with HM Customs to conduct the necessary surveillance on the waters to ensure that persons adhere to the rules.


HM Customs assisting with security


Mrs O'Flaherty-Maduro also indicated that the Ministry of Health and Social Development has therefore partnered with HM Customs to conduct the necessary surveillance on the waters to ensure that persons adhere to the rules.

For persons found breaching the conditions, they would forfeit the relaxed re-entry protocols and all exemptions including quarantine; however, while these persons will be able to return for their second shot, it would be done under strict guidelines.

According to the Health Minister, Hon Carvin Malone (AL), persons will now be responsible for their own transportation to and from the USVI, whether it will be in a private vessel or using a water taxi where vaccination will only be done on Wednesdays between 1:00 p.m -4:00 pm.

Perrons in the VI are also being encouraged to form groups to travel as that would allow for lower travel costs to the USVI.

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