Cayman plans pushed back to 1 October

 

The country has delayed its reopening for international tourism until at least 1 October, citing a rise in COVID-19 cases in other countries including the USA. 

The reopening will be evaluated again prior to 1 October and a decision to move forward or not will be made at that at time. 

It was only a few weeks ago when the Cayman Islands announced the reopening of their borders on 1 September, with strict protocols. Tourists that have made bookings are now being told that the borders are closed and that they will not be granted entry. Although some airlines scheduled flights and accepted bookings, the Cayman Islands government did not grant approval for any commercial flights. 

The Health City main hospital in East End will remain fully functional. Surgical and major diagnostic services will continue to be provided there while outpatient and follow-up care will be offered at the new location. 

Locals who live and work on the other side of the island have complained about problems in accessing the East End site.

The new facility will not function as a general practice clinic, but offer outpatient consultations for a range of specialised medical services, including cardiology, neurology, orthopaedics, medical oncology, gastroenterology, gynaecology and urology. 

When the islands reopen to medical tourists, the new Camana Bay centre will provide a location closer to the ports of entry and to visitors who prefer to stay in the Seven Mile Beach area before and after their procedures.

The hospital’s parent company, Narayana Health, reported a consolidated net loss of US$16.0 million in the second quarter of 2020, compared with net profit of over US$4 million in 2019. Earnings dropped by half as the COVID-19 pandemic and related lockdown measures hit the operations at the company’s hospitals in India.

When the Cayman Islands reopens for tourism there will be strict rules including:

  • All travellers must present a negative coronavirus test completed within 72 hours before entering the country.
  • Once travellers depart their planes, they will be required to self-quarantine for five days and present a second negative test before being permitted to roam. 
  • All travellers must wear a health monitoring device for continuous screening while in the Cayman Islands. 

Current plans do not limit countries that will be allowed in, but the British territory is following the rise of coronavirus outbreaks in certain countries and is monitoring the global pandemic. The situation is fluid and protocols of the phased reopening are being fine-tuned.  There is a strong possibility that it will follow other Caribbean islands in refusing entry to Americans.

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