Negative COVID-19 test valid up to 10 days for returning residents

Negative COVID-19 test valid up to 10 days for returning residents
A plane soars over the Glass Window Bridge in Eleuthera. Courtesy of Bahamas.com

Quarantine will be required for those who cannot obtain a test

NASSAU, BAHAMAS — Once commercial travel resumes on July 1, returning residents will not be required to obtain a secondary COVID-19 test once they possess a valid negative test within seven to 10 days of their return date, Deputy Chief Medical Officer Dr. Delon Brennen confirmed yesterday.

Some intended travelers took to social media yesterday, inquiring as to whether they would be required to obtain an accredited test in the jurisdiction they visited before they could be allowed to return to The Bahamas.

“As long as you have it (a negative test) within seven to 10 days then it would apply,” Brennen told ​Eyewitness News.​

“And as long as you’ve submitted the appropriate application and submitted those results, and you receive authorization based on those results, then it would apply.”

He continued: “There is no requirement if you are leaving this jurisdiction because that is dictated by the jurisdiction you are going in, so much like The Bahamas requires individuals to have those tests coming in and to complete an application coming in, the jurisdiction you are going to dictates what the procedures are.

“Upon return you would be informed — whether by the airline themselves, looking at the Ministry of Health website, the Ministry of Tourism website or the Ministry of Foreign Affairs website… would inform you as to what the regulations are ​is​ ​as ​it relates to return.”

When asked about individuals who travel outside of The Bahamas and seek to return without having obtained a credible COVID-19 test, Brennen said in cases where individuals are unable to obtain a test in the jurisdiction they have traveled to “upon their return, because they have not obtained a test, they would have to be quarantined upon their return”.

There is no requirement for residents of The Bahamas, who ​possess​ a negative COVID-19 test from an accredited facility within ​​the prescribed ​time frame,​ to quarantine upon returning to The Bahamas.

During the budget debate on Wednesday, Minister of Tourism Dionisio D’Aguilar said all coming in must have ​a​ negative test before traveling to The Bahamas after July 1.

His announcement came amid concerns that visitors coming to The Bahamas without knowing their COVID-19 status could cause a resurgence of cases in the country.

The Bahamas has flattened the curve of the virus.

Though clusters of cases continue to be recorded, there have only been four cases in the last three weeks.

As of yesterday, there were only 19 active cases of the virus.

There have been a total of 104 confirmed cases.

For more information contact COVID19travel@bahamas.gov.bs