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Official Statement From the Belize Tourism Board Regarding Swine Flu Pandemic
Date:4/30/2009

BELIZE CITY, Belize, April 30 /PRNewswire/ -- As a result of the recent swine flu outbreak throughout the world, the Central American country of Belize has implemented several vigilant measures in an effort to protect all residents and travelers. While the Ministry of Tourism, Civil Aviation and Culture and the Belize Tourism Board (BTB) have not been advised of any confirmed swine flu cases in Belize, the BTB is working closely with local health authorities to monitor any new developments.

Due to Belizean officials' understanding of the severity of this situation, and as a result of the proactive measures health authorities in Belize have taken and continue to take since the first signs of swine flu in Mexico; four cases are currently under investigation by the Ministry of Health. Based on that information, the BTB is also taking a very proactive approach with ensuring that all hotel and tour operators within the country are fully educated and prepared for any questions from tourists regarding the situation, and are armed with advice for keeping their property or business as sterile as possible.

The BTB is in constant contact with the Belize private sector and will be continuously updating them with any new developments regarding the swine flu pandemic. The following are some of the recommendations being provided by the BTB , as recommended by the Center for Disease Control (CDC), to tourism businesses to promote safety:

  • Ensure a high level of sanitation in your property to minimize the spread of any infection. Health experts recommend frequent hand washing and use of alcohol-based hand cleaners. Cover your nose or mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth as germs spread in this manner.
  • Any employee who exhibits flu symptoms should stay at home, minimizing contact with others. If flu symptoms persist or worsen, seek medical treatment.
  • Maintain a level of concern, not panic. At this point there is no reason to discourage people from traveling to or within Belize.
  • Individuals should be encouraged to take common sense steps to protect themselves including maintaining an overall healthy lifestyle with adequate sleep, proper nutrition, controlling stress and maintaining physical fitness.

The BTB continues to welcome travelers to Belize and is fully prepared to address any questions and/or concerns about traveling to the country during this time. Travelers are encouraged to call the BTB's toll-free number, 1-800-624-0686.

INTERVIEW OPPORTUNITIES:

  • Tracy Panton, Director of Tourism, Belize Tourism Board (BTB)

ADDITIONAL RESOURCES:


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SOURCE Belize Tourism Board
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