ANOTHER ROUND OF RELAXED COVID RULES: Some events do not need approval as guidelines eased

ANOTHER ROUND OF RELAXED COVID RULES: Some events do not need approval as guidelines eased

NASSAU, BAHAMAS — Prime Minister Philip Brave Davis yesterday announced a series of relaxations of COVID-19 restrictions, including the easing of rules surrounding large events.

The change comes as the country sees vastly reduced numbers of infections and hospitalizations.

Davis said restrictions on recitals, regattas, in-person conferences, seminars or workshops and drive-thru cookouts will be relaxed and will no longer require submissions for review and approval by the health advisory committee.

The latest relaxations will also remove the requirement for cruise ships to present a passenger and crew manifest disclosing vaccination status and reduce testing requirements for day-five post-travel.

Additionally, residential care establishments are now able to set their own parameters for visitors; and salons, barbershops and spas will be allowed to operate at 50 percent of the seating capacity.

As of Monday, there were 33,180 cases of COVID-19 in The Bahamas since the start of the pandemic, with 145 active and 10 hospitalized.

There were just four new infections confirmed on Monday, with three on New Providence and one on Grand Bahama.

The government amended the Health Services Rules two weeks ago, allowing social gatherings indoors with no more than 40 people, up from the 20 previously allowed; and gatherings outdoors to 100 people, up from the 30 previously permitted.

Attendees of outdoors gatherings must be fully vaccinated or present a negative COVID-19 test.

Travel, restaurants and churches all saw updated rules, with the latter returning to services, including weddings and funerals in the church, at 50 percent capacity.

The prime minister signaled that the Ministry of Health will provide more comprehensive details regarding the restrictions.

About Sloan Smith

Sloan Smith is a senior digital reporter at Eyewitness News, covering a diverse range of beats, from politics and crime to environment and human interest. In 2018, Sloan received a nomination for the “Leslie Higgs Feature Writer of The Year Award” from The Bahamas Press Club for her work with Eyewitness News.