Additional Measures Following the Announcement of First Case of COVID-19 in Belize
Belmopan. March 23, 2020. The Government of Belize continues to make decisions based on science, facts, and lessons learned from other countries for the safety and well-being of all citizens.
Coming out of the COVID-19 National Oversight Committee meeting held today, March 23rd, the following additional measures are going into effect:
1. A state of emergency has been declared for Ambergris Caye for 72 hours to allow the Ministry of Health to conduct the proper mapping and tracing of contacts following the announcement of the first confirmed case of COVID-19 in San Pedro Town, Ambergris Caye. Therefore, no person will be allowed to leave or enter Ambergris Caye during this time. Unauthorized vessels will be banned from leaving or arriving to the island.
2. With immediate effect, all bars, clubs, lounges, and casinos countrywide will be closed.
3. Restaurants will be closed for dining-in effective Wednesday, March 25th at 11:59 p.m. Thereafter, only take-out services will be allowed.
4. A press conference will be held on Wednesday, March 25th to present economic relief measures in order to ease the burden on Belizeans who are being affected by this crisis.
COVID-19 has created an unprecedented challenge to our way of life as Belizeans; however, we must all do our part to ensure our safety and the safety of others. The Government continues to emphasize the best practices to avoid the spread of COVID-19:
• Practice social distancing by staying home and avoiding large crowds.
• Wash hands regularly with soap and running water for 20 seconds.
• When coughing or sneezing, cover the mouth in the inside of elbows or inside a tissue to be disposed of immediately.
• Avoid close contact with persons who have flu-like symptoms.
• Avoid sharing personal items and disinfect common surfaces.
• If you have travelled to areas where COVID-19 is circulating and you are experiencing fever, cough, or difficulty breathing, seek medical attention immediately.
The Government advises the public to be guided by facts. To stay informed and updated on the evolving COVID-19 situation, follow the Facebook pages of the Ministry of Health, the Office of the Director of Health Services, and the Government Press Office. Updates can also be viewed at www.pressoffice.gov.bz. The dedicated hotline is 0-800-MOH-CARE (0-800-664-2273). Queries can be emailed to email@example.com.