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 Basseterre, St. Kitts, June 18, 2020 (SKNIS): St. Kitts and Nevis’ new Minister of Health, the Honourable Akilah Byron-Nisbett, gave a vote of confidence to officials managing the country’s COVID-19 response, adding that authorities are sufficiently prepared to tackle the expected second wave. Minister Byron-Nisbett made the remarks on Wednesday, June 17, 2020, at the National Emergency Operations Centre (NEOC) COVID-19 Briefing. The occasion marked the first time that the minister, who was sworn-in to the Cabinet last Sunday, has briefed the nation on the global pandemic. “I have seen the work that they have been putting in,” the new government minister stated, referring to her participation at a Health Emergency Operations Centre (HEOC) meeting held prior to the NEOC briefing. There are expectations that new cases of the coronavirus will be imported when local borders are eventually reopened to regional and international travel. Minister Byron-Nisbett said officials are ready. “I am confident that the team will continue to do as they have done in the first wave to ensure that we are able to curtail whatever the impact may be as it relates to COVID-19,” she expressed. St. Kitts and Nevis registered 15 positive cases of the coronavirus between March and April. All patients have recovered. It has been 59 days to date since the last case of COVID-19 was diagnosed. The Minister of Health thanked the members of the National COVID-19 Task Force for continuing to give “yeoman service to ensure that our country is able to fight this disease and we are able to ensure that the people as a whole are healthy and [remain] safe.” She added that the government would continue to commit all available resources in this fight against the dreaded disease. Minister Byron-Nisbett also commended residents of the twin-island federation for following the regulations designed to curb the spread of the coronavirus. She encouraged continued vigilance, particularly when the borders are reopened to regional and international passenger flights. 

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