13 April 2022
St Helena Government (SHG) will introduce a new testing regime for sea arrivals with effect from today, Wednesday 13 April 2022. Sea arrivals include visiting yachts, research/fishing vessels and the MV Helena.
From today, Wednesday 13 April, all persons arriving by sea will be provided with Lateral Flow testing kits, by Port Control, to test themselves onboard.
A Lateral Flow Test (LFT) is a coronavirus test which you can do yourself. LFTs have an estimated specificity of at least 99.97%, which means that fewer than three in every 10,000 tests will result in a false positive. Each test kit has its own unique identifier number, the result is shown on a handheld device that comes with the test. An image of the test results showing the individual’s designated identification number must then be emailed to the Health Services Directorate. If emails are not possible, test kit/results will be collected and delivered to the Health Services Directorate by Port Control.
St Helena’s COVID-19 Standard Operating Procedures currently require all vessels arriving to the Island, to provide proof of their last port of call and time at sea. This is to confirm that all crew/passengers on-board have had no further contact outside of the vessel prior to arrival, and is clarified by the Port Control’s routine checks and the vessel’s log books. The time at sea will continue to be used to assess the quarantine and testing procedures for those arriving at St Helena.
If a vessel has been at sea for 10 days or more upon their arrival – all persons onboard will be given two LFTs to carry out their COVID-19 tests. A test will need to be conducted on the day of arrival and the following day, using the procedures for reporting test results. If on both occasions negative test results are received from all onboard, they will be allowed to enter St Helena.
If a vessel has been at sea for less than 10 days – all persons will be required to remain onboard in quarantine conditions until they meet the 10-day quarantine requirement. For example, if the vessel has been at sea for seven days prior to arrival, all onboard will be required to quarantine for a further three days. Once this has been completed the procedure as stated above will commence.
In the case of positive test results returned from person(s) onboard the vessel – all persons will then be required to quarantine onboard for a further five days – on the fifth day a further LFT will need to be taken by all onboard, following the testing procedure. To be allowed ashore, all onboard must meet the requirement of two negative test results. On day six, all onboard are required to test and return a second negative test result. If all onboard receive a second consecutive negative test result, all will be allowed to enter St Helena.
13 April 2022