Some of the Barbadian students who had been stuck in China due to the outbreak of the deadly Coronavirus (COVID-19) have been cleared by authorities after returning home, Minister of Foreign Affairs Senator Jerome Walcott has revealed.
He told Barbados TODAY this morning that while some students remain in parts of the East Asian country where the virus originated, others managed to fly back to the island and were quarantined and subsequently cleared.
“Some of the students who were in China two or three weeks ago have come back to Barbados. The parents have made arrangements for them to come back. These students were quarantined at home or places where they would be monitored by the public health officials and so far, so good,” Walcott explained.
“There has been nothing to worry about where these students are concerned. One student reported that he had a fever, and he was checked and tested and was cleared.”
The Minister did not disclose whether any of the returning students had been stationed in Wuhan, ground zero for COVID-19 which has now racked up a death toll of more than 2,700 in China alone.
He also did not divulge where the remaining students were located, saying only that every provision was being made for their continued safety.
Walcott described their situation as “stable”.
“The Barbadian Ambassador in Beijing is in constant contact with them. There are no real issues and we appreciate the assistance that the Chinese government has been giving to them in terms of their safety,” the Foreign Affairs Minister said.
Since news of the outbreak, Government has been working on measures to deal with students in the danger zone in Wuhan, noting that given that the area itself is under quarantine, extracting them would not be an easy task.
Among the critical considerations is transport in and out of Wuhan, the capital of the central province of Hubei, where three students – two males and a female – have been confined to their university dormitories. The city has been on lockdown since the viral outbreak triggered a global alert.