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“Not all visitors comply with health protocols” says the Tourism Council after 44 students return from Cancun with positive antigen tests

Cancun, Q.R. — Stricter measures will be taken for the upcoming Easter holiday season after more than 40 tourists tested positive for Covid-19. The report was made by the director of the Tourism Promotion Council of Quintana Roo, Darío Flota Ocampo, who says that the stricter measures are necessary since, unfortunately, visitors are not fully complying with the health protocols established by state authorities.

In a statement, the agency highlighted the protocols implemented for the care of visitors and workers noting “these companies have invested a lot of money in maintaining health security measures and these actions have allowed us to rebound in tourism.

“However, not all people who visit us remain within the certified facilities and maintain healthy distance, the use of face masks, frequent hand washing, use of alcohol gel, etc. These protocols are not necessarily respected at all times in other spaces they visit.

“So we expect from the tourists who visit us a great co-responsibility in maintaining all the health protocols that keep us protected, and we invite them at all times to respect them.”

The concern came after Argentine authorities confirmed the arrival of a flight from Cancun with 44 passengers testing positive for COVID-19. Through a statement, the Ministry of Health of Argentina reinforced their recommendation to avoid non-essential travel abroad given the risk of transmission of the new variants that are circulating throughout the world.

The Buenos Aires Ministry of Health reported that 44 out of 149 students who recently celebrated their graduation in Cancun, returned with a positive antigen test. The Government of Argentina said following the positive test, “control actions were ordered.”

The government has requested the complete list of passengers from the National Migration Directorate in order to identify their close contacts, initiate contact tracing and monitor the mandatory quarantine of each one.

They also requested a PCR test from the 44 people who presented a positive antigen test, which will be sent to the National Reference Laboratory ANLIS-Malbrán in order to monitor for possible variants of the virus.

Argentine authorities stressed that “many countries in the region have seen an increase in cases in recent weeks,” specifying Chile, Uruguay, Paraguay and Brazil among them.

In response to the positive tests, Darío Flota said “protocols have been strict, but there are visitors who leave the certified areas, the hotels and restaurants, and who have to be responsible for their own protection, to maintain health recommendations, wear face masks, wash their hands, avoid physical contact,” he said.

Darío Flota explained that as far as he is aware, the Secretary of Tourism has already made contact with the Argentine operator for that group of students and the hotels where they stayed to monitor the possible risks of contagion.

“Stronger measures will be taken in the face of Easter to prevent it from being another source of contagion,” he stressed.

He also pointed out that health protocols are no longer being followed on the beaches as they were originally when people were allowed to resume beach activity after the confinement, he said insisting that municipal authorities have to be more strict in their surveillance.

“It is necessary for everyone on the beaches to assume their part. The beaches correspond to the municipalities as representatives, which they had done strictly at the beginning, but they need to resume that role otherwise, we are going to go back,” he warned