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Six New Positive COVID-19 cases on Wednesday. Active Cases Grow to 25. Persons in Home Isolation/Quarantine increase to 71

SINT MAARTEN (POND ISLAND) - As of March 24th, there were six (6) persons who tested positive for COVID-19; however, two (2) persons have recovered; bringing the total active cases to twenty-five (25). The total number of confirmed cases is now two thousand one hundred fourteen (2114).

The Collective Prevention Services (CPS) are monitoring twenty-four (24) people in home isolation. One (1) patient remains hospitalized at the St. Maarten Medical Center. The total number of deaths due to COVID-19 remains at twenty-seven (27).

The number of people recovered since the first case surfaced on St. Maarten has increased to two thousand sixty-two (2062). Forty-seven (47) people are in quarantine based on contact tracing investigations carried out by CPS.

The Ministry of Public Health, Social Development and Labour (VSA) Airport Health Team in collaboration with Health Care Laboratory Sint Maarten (HCLS) have tested 2607 travelers arriving at the Princess Juliana International Airport (PJIA), while CPS tested 22, 989 people throughout the community. As the numbers continue to fluctuate, CPS will continue to actively execute its contact tracing measures.

Minister Panneflek encourages all Dutch side residents 18+ to register for the COVID-19 vaccine via the online registration form which is available in English, Spanish, and Creole, and can be found via this link: https://forms.sintmaartengov.org/form.aspx?v=OGtn05kNmb or by paper registration which can be found at Collective Prevention Services (CPS) at the Vineyard Office Park Building, the Division of Labour Affairs at the Simpson Bay Public Service Center in Simpson Bay, doctors’ offices, the Government Administration Building, and select pharmacies.

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Four New Positive COVID-19 cases on Tuesday. 21 Active Cases. One hospitalized. 61 Persons in Home Isolation/Quarantine

SINT MAARTEN (POND ISLAND) - As of March 23rd, there were four (4) persons who tested positive for COVID-19; however, two (2) persons has recovered; bringing the total active cases to twenty-one (21). The total number of confirmed cases is now two thousand one hundred eight (2108).

The Collective Prevention Services (CPS) are monitoring eighteen (18) people in home isolation. One (1) patient remains hospitalized at the St. Maarten Medical Center. The total number of deaths due to COVID-19 remains at twenty-seven (27). 

The number of people recovered since the first case surfaced on St. Maarten has increased to two thousand sixty (2060). Forty-three (43) people are in quarantine based on contact tracing investigations carried out by CPS.

The Ministry of Public Health, Social Development and Labour (VSA) Airport Health Team in collaboration with Health Care Laboratory Sint Maarten (HCLS) have tested 2600 travelers arriving at the Princess Juliana International Airport (PJIA), while CPS tested 22, 989 people throughout the community. As the numbers continue to fluctuate, CPS will continue to actively execute its contact tracing measures.

Minister Panneflek encourages everyone to practice all sanitary measures set for the general public by wearing face masks, practicing social distancing and sanitizing your hands frequently.

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Nature Foundation Reminds Residents and Visitors to Take Care During Sea Turtle Nesting Season

SINT MAARTEN (COLE BAY) - The Nature Foundation Sint Maarten encourages residents and visitors to protect adult sea turtles and their eggs by limiting lighting and disturbances along the shore, and reporting sea turtle activity to the Foundation. With the start of the annual sea turtle nesting season, three endangered sea turtle species are expected to lay their nests on many of Sint Maarten's beaches from April until November and sometimes even as late as in December. The Nature Foundation is the designated authority to manage and research the sea turtle population and other protected species, appointed by the VROMI minister.

St. Maarten has permanent and nesting populations of green (Chelonia mydas), hawksbill (Eretmochelys imbricata) and leatherback (Dermochelys coriacea) sea turtles that have been reported to nest on the island. While sea turtles may nest on all beaches on St. Maarten, the beaches with the most reported nesting activity are Gibbs Bay, Simpson Bay, Mullet Bay, Guana Bay and Dawn beach.

Sea turtles often nest at night, laying up to 100-200 eggs, and sometimes return to do so multiple times over a period of a couple weeks. After approximately two months, the hatchlings will emerge and crawl to the ocean. However, all three sea turtle species are endangered species, and only about 1 in 1,000 hatchlings will survive to adulthood. For these reasons, precautions should be taken during the nesting season to ensure successful hatchings.

“Sea turtles play an important environmental and economic role for our island meanwhile; they face many threats to their survival due to pollution, overdevelopment of their nesting beaches, and direct human impact. It is essential that our visitors and residents take part in the role of protecting these creatures so that they continue to live in our waters and nest on our beaches,” explained Leslie Hickerson, Nature Foundation Educational Outreach Officer.

Sea turtles require a specific beach habitat to be able to nest. Lighting and activity on the beaches at night decrease nesting success because females avoid laying their eggs on bright, busy beaches. In addition, hatchlings become disoriented and travel towards artificial lights instead of the reflecting moonlight on the ocean. The Nature Foundation recommends that beachfront homes and businesses place a cap on lights or replace conventional lights with red lights to avoid these issues.

Further, if you encounter a sea turtle, nest, or hatchlings, it is recommended to remain at least 15 meters away since it is prohibited to disturb, harm, or kill sea turtles. Do not allow your dogs to dig around the nest, and never operate vehicles on the beach sand. This could damage sea turtle nests and minimizing nesting success. Last year, six sea turtles were also reported injured or killed due to boat strikes. Boat captains should drive responsibly in the lagoon and bay areas, traveling at no faster than 5 knots to avoid collisions and keep watch at all times.

The Nature Foundation is currently collecting nesting data to compare it to previous surveys. This research allows us to evaluate the nesting seasons' historical success and determine human activity's impact over the years. Individuals can participate by volunteering to patrol beaches late at night or early in the morning. Please contact us if you find sea turtle tracks or an apparent nest. The Nature Foundation also encourages St. Maarten residents to spread awareness by checking in weekly to "Turtle Thursdays," a series of educational programming posted on our social media accounts for all ages.

If you are interested in volunteering, want to know more, or have questions, contact the Nature Foundation at +1-721-544-4267 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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Successful second edition of the Coast Guard Recruitment Day

SINT MAARTEN (SIMPSON BAY) - The Dutch Caribbean Coast Guard (DCCG) would like to thank the community of Sint Maarten for attending the second edition of the recruitment day held last Saturday, the DCCG said in a press statement on Monday.

“For the day, the Coast Guard opened her doors to all St. Maarten youngsters interested in becoming a Coast Guard officer. Many youngsters with their parents and guardians braved the torrential downpours and gusting winds that day and received information and were able to speak with Coast Guard officers about their work.

“Some youngsters even faced a challenge setup to measure their physical fitness. The day started at 10 AM at lasted until 1 PM with different stands where both boys and girls could receive useful information about the Coast Guard training.

“The visitors could take a look at all the Coast Guard equipment, have a visit on the Metal Shark and Cutter where an officer gave lots of information. Many also got the opportunity to do some physical training in the challenge alley and last but not least watch the fly-by of the Coast Guard plane.

“The Coast Guard was honored with the visit of the Prime Minister of St. Maarten, Silveria Jacobs and the Minister of Justice, Anna Richardson whom both visited the station during the recruitment day. The Ministers visited all the stands and encouraged all the youngsters and Coast Guard officers in reaching their career goals.

“For those youngsters who did not make it to the event but are interested in the training, you can visit our Facebook ‘Kustwacht Caribisch gebied’ for more information about the training and apply online.”

 dccg on the vessel

 dccg exercise

 dccg info to prospectives

 

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COVID-19 testing facility now open at Princess Juliana Airport

SINT MAARTEN (SIMPSON BAY-AIRPORT) - The Minister of Public Health, Social Development and Labor (VSA), Richard Panneflek hereby informs the public that PJIAE in cooperation with Healthcare Laboratory (HCLS), has opened a COVID-19 testing facility at Princess Juliana Airport.

Passengers who are traveling to US territory, both tourists and residents can make use of this facility from 11am until 4 pm daily.

This service will offer quick and easy antigen rapid testing for $110. The Minister of VSA Richard Panneflek was invited and paid a work visit to the facility where he was met by Dr. Fey van de Dijs. 

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Prime Minister Jacobs recognizes World Down Syndrome Day

SINT MAARTEN (POND ISLAND) - The United Nations (UN) reports that over 3000 to 5000 children are born with Down Syndrome every year worldwide and goes on to say that down syndrome has always been a part of the human condition and commonly results in variable effects on learning styles, physical characteristics and health. St. Maarten therefore, recognizes that there are many persons living on St. Maarten who are classified as being born with down syndrome and therefore have special needs. We recognize, appreciate and validate you as key stakeholders in our society for which we must ensure your rights are met and you are included.

Within our community, on St. Maarten, we have members of our community who are special and unique. However, we observe and respect their differences. On March 21, 2021, World Down Syndrome Day is celebrated. World down syndrome day brings awareness on the well-being and the need for inclusion for persons with down syndrome, but also to celebrate their individuality.

Sadly, individuality is not always respected, which is why I would like to take the opportunity to remind our citizens to join in the fight to eliminate all forms of discrimination against people with down syndrome and all who have special needs and requirements to participate fully in our society.

Let us join the international community in their fight for recognition and respect and independence of down syndrome. We must ensure that our society is beneficial and conducive for all members of our community to thrive and prosper.

I would also like to take this opportunity to highlight the work of the White and Yellow Cross Care Foundation, Sister Basilia Center and Prince Willem Alexander School for Special Education. These institutions selflessly dedicate their time and support for persons with down syndrome and their families as well as all other institutions that help to integrate them in their mainstream care, assisting in preparation of persons with down syndrome to be productive members of society and allow them to feel included in our community.

On behalf of the government of St. Maarten, Happy World Down Syndrome Day.

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One COVID-19 recovery. 18 Active Cases. One hospitalized. 61 in Home Isolation/Quarantine

SINT MAARTEN (POND ISLAND) - As of March 20th, there were zero (0) persons who tested positive for COVID-19. One (1) person has recovered, bringing the total active cases to eighteen (18). The total number of confirmed cases remains at now two thousand one hundred one (2101).

The Collective Prevention Services (CPS) are monitoring seventeen (17) people in home isolation. One (1) patient remains hospitalized at the St. Maarten Medical Center. The total number of deaths due to COVID-19 remains at twenty-seven (27).

The number of people recovered since the first case surfaced on St. Maarten has increased to two thousand and fifty-six (2056). Forty-four (44) people are in quarantine based on contact tracing investigations carried out by CPS.

The Ministry of Public Health, Social Development and Labour (VSA) Airport Health Team in collaboration with Health Care Laboratory Sint Maarten (HCLS) have tested 2596 travelers arriving at the Princess Juliana International Airport (PJIA), while CPS tested 22, 989 people throughout the community. As the numbers continue to fluctuate, CPS will continue to actively execute its contact tracing measures.

Minister Panneflek encourages everyone to wear a mask, practice 2-meters social distancing, sanitize and wash your hands frequently and be cautious of large gathering’s.

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Second Moderna Vaccination Dose starts Monday

SINT EUSTATIUS (ORANJESTAD) - The Public Health Department is calling out to everyone who received their first dose a month ago, in the week of February 22nd, 2021. The department will start with the vaccination of the second dose upcoming Monday, March 22nd, 2021, at the Sports Hall.

In the upcoming week the persons that were already vaccinated with the first dose in February, will be vaccinated with the second dose. These persons must bring their vaccination card on which the date for the second dose is indicated, a valid ID and also a new health declaration form that can be picked up at the Public Health Department.

Residents who still want to get vaccinated, can still do so. There are vaccines left for approximately 250 persons. The Public Health Department encourages everyone who is not vaccinated yet, to call +599 3182981 to register and to pick up a health declaration form. People that are already on the registration list, will be contacted by the Public Health Department to get confirmation if they still want to get vaccinated for their first dose.

Next batch postponed

The arrival of the 1200 additional Moderna vaccines for 600 persons is postponed due to unforeseen circumstances. The initial plan was that the Ministry of Health, Welfare and Sports would deliver the second batch tomorrow, Friday, March 19th. However, due to a fall out of the current transformer, replacement had to be arranged. This is currently in process.

765 persons

Up till now 765 persons were vaccinated with the first doses of the Moderna vaccine, which is a bit more than 30% of the adult population. The one-week vaccination campaign started on Monday, February 22nd, 2021 and lasted until Friday, February 26th.

Vulnerable

Results from internal analyses show that the elderly group in the Statia community and also persons with chronic health conditions were underrepresented during the first round of vaccination. This is a point of concern as this means that many senior citizens and persons with chronic conditions still need to receive the vaccine. People with diabetes, obesity, heart disease, etc. or persons with weakened immune systems are at greater risk of more serious illness if they are infected with the COVID-19 virus. It can also result to death. The Public Health Department will therefor continue to reach out to these persons and advise them to get vaccinated as soon as possible.

To register for the COVID-19 vaccination, persons can call +599 3182981 or send an e-mail to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. (Statia GIS)

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Government wishes Arubans a Happy National Anthem & Flag Day

SINT MAARTEN (POND ISLAND) - The Government of St. Maarten would like to express best wishes to the Government and people of Aruba as well as all Arubans residing on and visiting St. Maarten celebrating the 45th Anniversary of Aruba’s National Anthem and Flag day. “O Aruba, dushi Terra…”

Enjoy this day, taking every opportunity to reflect on the accomplishments of Aruba. 

Aruba has a particularly strong relationship with St. Maarten, sharing a long history of good relations, but also being a sister island-country within the former Netherlands Antilles and the Dutch Kingdom. We share families and culture based on the movement of people throughout the Caribbean, and specifically between Aruba and St. Maarten. We continue to learn and grow from each other, as we foster relationships based on mutual respect and understanding.

St. Maarten wishes Aruba and all Arubans all over the world much success in all your future endeavors. Feliz dia di Himno y Bandera!!

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Five New Positive COVID-19 cases. 15 Active Cases

SINT MAARTEN (POND ISLAND) - As of March 17th, there were five (5) persons who tested positive for COVID-19. There was a recovery rate of zero (0) cases today. The total active cases is fifteen (15) and the total number of confirmed cases is now two thousand and ninety three (2093).

The Collective Prevention Services (CPS) are monitoring fourteen (14) people in home isolation. One (1) patient remains hospitalized at the St. Maarten Medical Center. The total number of deaths due to COVID-19 remains at twenty-seven (27).

The number of people recovered since the first case surfaced on St. Maarten remains at two thousand and fifty-one (2051). Forty-seven (47) people are in quarantine based on contact tracing investigations carried out by CPS.

The Ministry of Public Health, Social Development and Labour (VSA) Airport Health Team in collaboration with Health Care Laboratory Sint Maarten (HCLS) have tested 2591 travelers arriving at the Princess Juliana International Airport (PJIA), while CPS tested 22, 027 people throughout the community. As the numbers continue to fluctuate, CPS will continue to actively execute its contact tracing measures.

Minister Panneflek hereby reminds everyone that COVID-19 is real. In efforts to achieve zero active cases, we need to do our part to protect ourselves, our families and our community.

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