Coronavirus
GRD | Nov 20, 2020

Amber Connect to roll out COVID-19 entry protocol system for Grenada

/ Our Today

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New system comes into effect December 1

Amber Group founder and CEO, Dushyant Savadia. (Photo: ICDGroup.net)

Jamaican technology and software company Amber Connect Group has been contracted by the government of Grenada to establish that country’s electronic health-risk, travel authorisation system.

Grenada is the latest country to have contracted Amber Connect to roll out its system, as part of its overall COVID-19 travel protocol system, the others being Jamaica, the Turks and Caicos Islands, British Virgin Islands and St. Lucia.

The Grenada government, which made the announced on Wednesday, said it was collaborating with Amber Connect to introduce new COVID-19 protocols that would ensure that all arriving passengers in the country possess a certificate of entry. This certificate of entry must be produced by incoming passengers to Guyana before boarding their flights.

The new measure will come into effect on December 1 this year. Amber Connect has been contracted by Guyana to provide a comprehensive and interactive website and mobile application system that will enable participating governments to pre-approve travelers to the ‘Spice Island’. This is in addition to providing a control entry system while tracking the country’s COVID-19 health cases.

SYSTEM FIRST ROLLED OUT IN JAMAICA

The Amber Connect electronic health-risk, travel authorisation system is described as one of the first such systems of its kind in the world and was first implemented in Jamaica as JamCOVID. The system was rolled out in Jamaica after the Andrew Holness-led government closed Jamaica’s borders in March this year and sought to restrict travel.

The interactive website and mobile application system allows governments to preapprove travellers and control their entry, as a management tool against the spread of the deadly COVID-19, which had engulfed the global community. The software will allow the Grenadian government to screen visitors before they arrive in the country.

It will also enable the government to link information regarding the initial screening data entered by a visitor to immigration checkpoints. The system builds a secure digital health folder on each person entering the country.

Among other applications of the software is the ability to better manage risk by allowing authorised officials to digitally record high-risk cases, isolate these cases, where necessary while tracking those, who came in close contact with affected individuals. The portal of the Grenada system will be housed at covid19.gov.gd and will give online access for the application for travel entry into Grenada.

At present, all incoming passengers are required to show a negative COVID-19 Polymerase Chain Reaction ( PCR) test and a place for temporary quarantine while awaiting the result of on island testing before being allowed to mingle with the general population.

ALL SYSTEMS GO FOR DECEMBER 1 START DATE

Nickolas Steele, Grenada health minister: “This will be absolutely necessary by the 1st of December.” (Photo: Caricom Today)

Addressing journalist at a post Cabinet news briefing, Health Minister Nickolas Steele told reporters everything was being put in place for the December 1 start date. He advised that an entry certificate would be processed in advance and would become mandatory for entry into Grenada.

According to the health minister, “this will be absolutely necessary by the 1st of December”.

He encouraged individuals to begin the processing now, noting that persons who have already applied can reapply on the system or use their current acceptance and PCR.

Steele noted that his government had already notified the International Air Transport Association and the airlines of the government’s intention. Stating that within 10 days the airlines will begin to enforce the new policy, Steele disclosed that his ministry has already launched a web portal for travel into Grenada.

Applicants will have to show proof of the PCR test and paid accommodation before the entry certificate is provided electronically. In addition, applicants will still have to undergo a minimum quarantine of seven days.

Having fulfilled these requirements, the Ministry of Health in Grenada will send an emailed copy of an entry certificate, which will be used to board any incoming aircraft or airline to Grenada.

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