The Office of the Director of Health Services issued a statement :

"The surveillance team of the Central Health Region and this desk had been alerted of a flight that would be landing in Belize that had 12 passengers with flights originating out of China and the team was prepared to initiate our investigation upon arrival. We can confirm that indeed the flight had 12 persons who had arrived in the US in the latter part of January and who had previously been in China, they all had different departure dates. During their days of stay in the US, they have confirmed they visited multiple places as tourists. As per protocol, our concern remains the 14 day period after having departed from China," the statement noted.

The health officials were notified of 3 passengers who appeared to be ilL The Director of Health Services confirmed that all passengers in this group of travelers have been checked by the group of doctors who were deployed to the airport and all of them are afebrile with no respiratory condition that would seem to be related to the flu.

One person was hoarse and had a chronic cough and a sample/swab was taken as a screening measure. This sample will be processed this afternoon at the Central Medical Laboratory. The office says that for now, these passengers have been cleared by health authorities but there are immigration anomalies that are currently being sorted out in conjunction with the airline.

Earlier it was reported:

The fate of 12 Chinese nationals who landed at the Phillip Goldson International this morning is up in the air at this hour. They arrived on a flight from Los Angeles but Belizean Immigration reportedly refused to receive them.

The AA flight on which they came has also reportedly refused to take them back. According to reports one of them has exhibited cough symptoms and hoarseness, the Minsitry of Health has a fixed team on the ground to respond and make an assessment.

Reports say they traveled from Wuhan, China 14 days ago and transited through US.

Presently we are told there is some push and pull between AA who is refusing to take them back and Immigration authorities who are refusing them.

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The following is the latest press release from the Ministry of Health on its vigilance and monitoring of reports relating to the Coronavirus.

The surveillance team of the Central Health Region and this desk had been alerted of a flight that would be landing in Belize that had 12 passengers with flights originating out of China and the team was prepared to initiate our investigation upon arrival.

We can confirm that indeed the flight had 12 persons who had arrived in the US in the latter part of January and who had previously been in China, they all had different departure dates. During their days of stay in the US they have confirmed they visited multiple places as tourists. As per protocol, our concern remains the 14 day period after having departed from China.

Upon arrival, we were notified of 3 passengers who appeared to be ill.

We can now confirm that all passengers in this group of travelers have been checked by the group of doctors who were deployed to the airport and all of them are afebrile with no respiratory condition that would seem to be related to the flu. One person was hoarse and had a chronic cough (years) and a sample/swab was taken as a screening measure. This sample will be processed this afternoon at our Central Medical Laboratory.

For now, these passengers have been cleared by health authorities but we understand that there are immigration anomalies that are currently being sorted out in conjunction with the airline.

We continue to advise all to please await for official confirmation of any story / rumor before causing further panic as that certainly doesn’t help any or our processes.

To the teams across the country who continue to be actively engaged in our routine public health measures, we salute and thank you all.

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Screening at P.G.I.A.


A News Five team has been at the international airport camped outside the arrival section as it is a busy day for visitors entering the country. What could have been seen were passengers exiting with masks over their faces and others applying hand sanitizers as screening is taking place by health officers for persons travelling from countries that have had confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus. Some passengers say that the screening process included them simply being asked where they are coming from and are then free to go, but there were a group of Chinese nationals who were reportedly not allowed to enter the main building for immigration check-in. News Five can confirm that from as early as eight o’clock this morning, a surveillance team from the Central Health Region and Epidemiologist with the Ministry of Health, Doctor Russell Manzanero, had been deployed to the Philip Goldson International Airport. The News Five crew was able to get a comment from Epidemiologist Doctor Manzanero as the medical team exited the P.G.I.A.