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Jan 22, 2021

70K COVID Tests Conducted in Belize

Initially, Belize’s health and tourism sector were already preparing for the testing requirements for return travel to the United States.  The Ministry of Health approved additional COVID-19 testing sites in Belize City and popular tourist destinations.  One of the ministry’s other undertakings is the active surveillance for the newly discovered variants of COVID-19.  Belize cannot test for the specific strains of the virus.  But the ministry has sent samples to Baylor College of Medicine and Caribbean Public Health Agency, CARPHA, to determine if the highly transmissible strains detected in the United Kingdom and South Africa are in Belize.  Until then, the Ministry of Health and Wellness, along with its counterparts in the private sector, continues to administer thousands of P.C.R. and rapid tests without confirming the particular strain of the virus spreading across the country.

 

 

Melissa Diaz-Musa

Dr. Melissa Diaz-Musa, Acting Director of Health Services

“When we started the new measures with regards to the rolling out of the rapid testing, etc., we did see a very good response in the beginning.  So at one point they had some days where over a hundred persons showed up to be tested.  Over the last week, this number has come down and for that reason we want to expand the surveillance so to out and look for persons who may be ill in order to manage them early and in order to isolate these persons early.  So over the last, in total we’ve done almost seventy thousand tests in country, that includes rapid tests and P.C.R. and out of that we’ve completed over thirty thousand rapid tests already.  So the rapid test drive has been pretty successful and we hope to continue to ensure that testing is rolled out all over the country and that persons access the facilities or the mobile centers and get the test done.  Don’t shy away from being tested, it’s very important for you to know so that you can even protect your loved ones, the vulnerable persons in your home.”


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