The Government of St. Kitts and Nevis continues to put measures in place to strengthen the Federation’s borders against COVID-19 popularly referred to as the 2019 Novel Coronavirus, Prime Minister Dr. the Honourable Timothy Harris, said during his address to the nation Sunday.

“We continue to strengthen our borders daily as new information and advice come forward. We have approved the recruitment for additional immigration and customs officers, as we defend our national health and security interests,” he said. “As always, our measures will be based on what is right for St. Kitts and Nevis at this time and in keeping with the World Health Organization’s guidelines and our National Working Group on COVID-19. There is no one size fits all response.”

Dr. Harris noted that protecting the borders at all costs is of paramount importance.

“We are a small open economy reliant on border management, both in and out, for our survival, including for emergency care of our citizens, some of whom may need emergency treatment abroad, food and medicine for which our ports must be able to accept,” said Prime Minister Harris.

Prime Minister Harris said that the government remains vigilant preparing for any challenges posed by COVID-19.

“Your Team Unity Government is working to a robust plan to protect and prepare you and your family for COVID-19. This is not a time for panic and excitable behaviours. It is for our leaders to act in the national interest, calmly, sensibly and conscientiously. For the past five years, this is the hallmark of your Team Unity Government and it is how we will approach the coming days and months,” he said.

In addition to recruiting more officers, several other measures were put in place, including updating the travel advisory, injecting nearly 17 million dollars into the health budget and restricting visits to elderly centres and prisons.