President Luis Abinader affirmed that if necessary, the Government will resume Covid insurance “DR Insurance Tourism Assistance Plan” to guarantee health coverage to tourists traveling to the Dominican Republic. This model bore fruit under challenging times pandemic that it is over.
Speaking exclusively for Listín Diario, the president explained that many insurances had incorporated coverage for Covid-19, and it is no longer a strange case, as when the pandemic began. However, it was not incorporated into standard health insurance, and the operators have not felt the need for it to be restored.
Abinader said that the Government will be pending, “in sight,” to maintain what has been achieved by implementing this insurance, which until now has not been asked to be restored.
“In case it is needed, we will study it,” explained President Abinader, regarding the fact that the Covid insurance that was applied through Banreservas insurance has already ended. The world is experiencing a new wave of variants of the coronavirus.
Previously, President Abinader explained that “we have to learn to live with Covid,” whose outbreak is in a fifth wave in the world, and the contagion levels are high; the lethality is 0.88. He indicated that according to specialists, it is in a plateau stage the tendency is to go down.
Covid insurance model
The health insurance for tourists traveling to the country is paid for by those visitors because the program ended and was supplemented by taking free samples from travelers.
The country has many people vaccinated with a first and second dose. Currently, the number of vaccinated with a third dose is also growing, and some have a fourth (though the policy of a fourth dose failed in Israel). In addition, vaccination for children aged five to 11 years was also announced.
The DR Safe Tourism Assistance Plan impacted more than 400,000 tourists during its validity, from September 15, 2020, to July 31, 2021.
Currently, tourists who, for health reasons, have had to stay in isolated rooms in hotel facilities bear their expenses while they are in that situation. The travel insurance for Covid-19 covered by the Dominican Government expired on July 31 last year.
The coverage attracted thousands of visitors, and other countries copied the model.
Rafael Blanco Tejera, president of the Asonahores, had explained to this editor that the protocols, structured and implemented since the beginning of the opening of the tourism sector, contemplate that hotels have rooms to isolate any tourist infected with Covid-19 and that the hotel offers them monitoring of their health status through allied clinics.
“This cost is assumed by the tourist himself, since the Covid insurance program offered by the Government, through Seguros Reservas, has already concluded, however, we have not had any incidents for this reason,” assured the representative of the hotel sector.
The insurance validity was from September 15, 2020, to July 31, 2021.
This Safe Tourism DR Assistance Plan was recognized for innovation, development, and implementation by the Dominican Association of Health Tourism in the fifth version of the International Congress of Health and Wellness Tourism. In addition, it was recently awarded Mercado Magazine in the Entrepreneurs of the Year 2021 award, highlighting in this opportunity the Allies to the Tourism Sector, as part of recognizing the entities that have contributed with specialized solutions to the resurgence of the local tourism sector.
When tourists get out of the resort, they should respect, the local rules about COVID-19, showing respect for this country. And not just walking without a facemask and not keeping distance
The “local rules” have to be exampled by the Dominican public. If the general public respects the rules foreign tourists customarily will do same.
Organized tourist activities and at hotel and resort settings there is compliance. Outside of these sites tourists conform as a matter of course to rules. They do not want: the stress, the costs of quarantine housing, the costs of health care, and the hell of rescheduling departure from the country should they acquire covid.
Yet, there will be those, locals and foreigners, who feel they are exception to the rules.