The New Covid-19 Measures announced by Prime Minister Andrew Holness will begin today, November 18, 2021.Speaking in Parliament on Tuesday (November 16, 2021), the Prime Minister said: “The changes to the measures I am announcing [today] represent the start of a cautious, gradual and controlled approach towards getting the economy back to full productive capacity. COVID-19 has evolved from a pandemic to being endemic. The highly transmissible nature of the Delta variant and ongoing vaccine hesitancy have made the goal of ‘zero COVID-19’ virtually unachievable. The SARS-COV2 virus is here to stay, in its current form or some variant thereof. Most societies including Jamaica, will therefore need to learn to live with COVID-19, at least over the medium term.” The changes will last for a three-week period ending December 9, 2021.
- The curfew hours will be from 9 pm nightly to 5 am the following morning. This will remain in effect until 5 am on December 10, 2021.
- The general public gathering limit remains at 10 persons.
- The limit on the number of persons in attendance at places of worship has increased from the current limit of 50 to 100 persons; providing physical distance requirement is met. However, no crusades, conferences or conventions are permitted.
- The number of persons permitted to physically attend a wedding has increased from 50 to 100.
- The limit on persons physically attending Annual or Extraordinary General Meetings has increased from 50 to 100.
- Physical attendance at events hosted by public entities will continue to be limited to a maximum of 50 persons, these are to be controlled functions by invitation only and persons attending will be required to be fully vaccinated.
Funerals and Burials
- The limit on the number of persons present at a burial has been increased from 15 to 20 to align with the limit for funeral services. As a reminder, burials are permitted only Monday to Friday between 9 am and 4 pm. Memorial services, that is services without the remains in church, can be up to 100 persons subject to the size of the church.
- The pre-testing requirement for persons travelling to Jamaica; presenting a negative COVID test within 3 days prior to travel remains in place. Both PCR and antigen tests are permissible.
- The existing travel protocols for fully vaccinated persons require them to quarantine for 8 days following their arrival in Jamaica or to take a PCR test after arrival at their own expense, to be released from quarantine.
- Effective November 18, fully vaccinated persons who obtain a PCR test as their pre-test prior to travel will not be required to conduct another PCR test after arrival to be released from quarantine.
- Fully vaccinated travelers may do an antigen test prior to arrival. However they are required to either quarantine for 8 days or to do a PCR test in Jamaica to be released from quarantine.
In the meantime, the Government continues its Covid-19 public education programme.Persons are encouraged to continue the infection prevention and control protocols (mask wearing, sanitising and physical distancing) as well as getting vaccinated.