Tourism Health Programme to be revived in Tobago

Dr. Lisa Indar, Director Surveillance, Disease Prevention and Control, Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) paid a courtesy visit to Assemblyman Dr. Faith B.Yisrael, Secretary of Health, Wellness and Social Protection, Councillor Tashia Burris, Secretary of Tourism, Culture, Antiquities & Transportation and Assemblyman Sonny Craig, Assistant Secretary in the Division of Health, Wellness and Social Protection on 11th April, 2022, at the Division’s Head Office, to discuss the revival of the Tourism and Health Programme (THP) in Tobago.

The THP was launched in Tobago in 2016 and since then, training sessions were done on different aspects of the programme such as the Tourism Health Information System, advanced food safety and COVID-19 prevention and control guidelines. Additional training sessions will be conducted in the upcoming weeks / months, providing the necessary ground work to integrate the THP into Tobago’s tourism and health strategies. More information on the integration of the THP in Tobago will be publicised subsequently.

The THP is an innovative, novel programme, addressing the health, safety and environmental (HSE) threats to tourism. The aim of the THP is to strengthen the capacity of countries to prepare and respond to public health threats, enhance the health and safety of visitors and locals and improve the quality, competitiveness and resilience of Caribbean tourism. The THP is being executed by CARPHA in collaboration with the Caribbean Tourism Organisation (CTO) and the Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association (CHTA).

Key components of the THP include:

  • Tourism and Health Information System (THiS) – A web-based, early warning and response monitoring and response system to confidentially capture travellers’ illnesses in real time, with a built in alert system to trigger a rapid and coordinated response, to reduce illness spread, economic and reputational negative impact.
  • Caribbean Vessel Surveillance System (CVSS) – An electronic system created to enhance the monitoring and response to gastroenteritis and other syndromes, COVID-19 and other public health illnesses on cruise ships and other vessels. Real time alerts are sent to countries if illness thresholds are reached /past before the ship arrives to a country.
  • Caribbean Travellers Health App – A multi-faceted, novel, Caribbean traveller’s health information repository designed for travellers and health and tourism stakeholders. It provides travel health information by each Caribbean destination (including vaccinations, health care facilities, accommodation listing).
  • Caribbean Traveller’s Health Assurance Stamp for Healthier Safer Tourism (HST) – A measurable and verifiable travellers health assurance and recognition award for tourism entities implementing the recommended proactive COVID-19 health monitoring and safety measures (training, THiS, standards). Facilities awarded the HST stamp are listed as preferred healthier safer option on the Caribbean Traveller’s Health Mobile App and CARPHA, CTO and CHTA websites.

More information on the THP can be accessed at www.carpha.org/THP

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