(CMR) Twenty of the passengers who traveled from the UK to Jamaica on Monday have tested positive for COVID-19.
The samples will be sent to the Caribbean Public Health Agency to determine if anyone had the new variant identified in the UK last week.
The passengers were among 301 travelers who arrived on the flight allowed into the country following a ban of flights from the UK by the Jamaican Government on Monday.
Jamaica joined several countries across the world that banned flights from the UK after Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced on Saturday that a new strain of COVID-19, which was 70 % more transmissible, was identified in the UK.
However, Monday's flight was still allowed to proceed, but passengers were told they would be required to quarantine in a St Ann hotel. A video circulating on social media showed several persons upset with the decision that they would have to be placed in state quarantine.
Of the 301 passengers that arrived on the island on Monday, five were in transit, and three were children under 12 years old who have not been sampled. Two test results are still pending.
In a statement issued on Wednesday, the Ministry of Health and Wellness said the 20 people who tested positive for the virus, along with four close contacts, will be placed in state isolation and monitored until they have recovered.
The 267 travelers who tested negative for COVID-19 will be removed from state to home quarantine, where they are expected to do a 14-day mandatory quarantine.
Travelers who will be quarantined at home will be fitted with electronic armbands and monitored by health teams and the Jamaica Constabulary Force.