PHILIPSBURG--Workers, who had been in contact with a positive coronavirus COVID-19 case are not required to present a negative COVID-19 test to return to work.
“On the contrary, once an employee has been identified via contact-tracing efforts as having had contact with a COVID-19 person, they are to be quarantined for a minimum of 14 days from the date of last contact, during which time they will be monitored by CPS [Collective Prevention Services – Ed.]. If after this period, they do not exhibit COVID-19 symptoms, they should then be allowed to return to work,” it was stated in a press release issued by St. Maarten Chamber of Commerce and Industry (COCI) on Tuesday evening.
CPS’ strategy is to test persons who display signs and symptoms consistent with COVID-19 with the aim of finding active cases and prompt source- and contact-tracing.
The misconception regarding testing of workers that exists in sections of the community is being clarified in informative flyers that COCI has produced in collaboration with the Ministry of Public Health, Social Development and Labour (VSA) and the Ministry of Tourism, Economic Affairs, Transport and Telecommunications (TEATT).
The flyers were created in an effort to continue informing the public, particularly the business community, on the protocols related to the COVID-19 pandemic and to curb “miscommunication” between employers and employees.
click for One of the informative flyers.
CPS had identified a gap in information relating to COVID-19 policies surrounding employees returning to work. This concern was brought forward and COCI said it felt the need to collaborate with the two ministries to address this. As a result, a flyer was developed with the aim of providing clarity in a simple and straightforward manner.
The flyer addresses, amongst other things, the misconception that it is mandatory for employees who have been in contact with a COVID-19 patient to present a negative COVID-19 test before returning to their place of employment, which, within the protocols established by CPS, is not mandatory.
The flyer will form part of the ongoing COVID-19 awareness campaign and will be published in the media and distributed to the business community to display in their establishments.
COCI reminded and advises the business community that adherence to the COVID-19 protocol should be adopted as much as possible, “since the survival of your business also depends on the health of your employees and customers.”
The VSA Ministry, through CPS, will continue to inform the community on vigilance and implore the community to be aware of the protocols and safety measures to assist in achieving a COVID-19-free society.
The TEATT Ministry will continue inspection in an efficient manner, to ensure the protocols and measures are adhered to by civil society.
COCI urges business owners/operators who would like this information to be displayed in their place of business to contact COCI to reserve flyers and posters.