Joseph Promises Masks For Everyone

YICHANG, CHINA - JANUARY 21 2020: Travelers wearing protective masks walk outside a railway station in Yichang in central China's Hubei province Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2020. China has stepped up the measures to control the spread of the new coronavirus that has infected hundreds of people in China.- PHOTOGRAPH BY Feature China / Barcroft Media (Photo credit should read Feature China / Barcroft Media via Getty Images)

Minister of Health Molwyn Joseph says masks will be provided for every citizen amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.

Joseph also dismissed rumours that the government is not adequately prepared to handle the Covid-19 crisis.

“[We] discourage any attempt to create anxiety in the society. We have personal protective equipment for doctors, our nurses, our law enforcement agencies, our EMS; all these individuals will be well-equipped when they have to deal with Covid cases or any situation involving Covid,” the health minister assured.

According to Joseph, masks will be first distributed to taxi drivers and bus operators in short order.

He noted that residents will receive theirs after within two weeks.

“I’m working with the Minister of Trade and we are hoping within two weeks we will be able to produce enough masks in Antigua and Barbuda that every citizen will have masks to wear. And personally, as the Minister of Health, I’m hoping that within the next two weeks all Antiguans and Barbudans will be wearing a mask.”

Joseph also expressed displeasure with the recent violations of the public health regulations and highlighted that it is a challenge faced by his ministry.

“The area we are challenged in … is the reckless behaviour of individuals, displayed since the declaration of the curfew last weekend. That is the problem,” he added.


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  1. Minister why are you giving mask to citizens and not saving them for healthcare providers and people providing essential services? This is wasteful usage of masks. You have North American countries struggling for masks for hospitals and you are just giving them away. Citizens should not require mask as they are indoors and locked down. When out and that should be limited, all they need is to practice safe distancing and hand washing. Please reconsider your intentions as you may require these same masks in the future and to the people/healthcare providers that are in place to assist with recovery.

    • Its cloth masks for the populace, not the same masks that are difficult to get and needed by medical personnel. At least these when worn properly will prevent an infected person from infecting others. Note they are not as effective as the ones worn by medical personnel (eg N95) hence the guidelines need to be followed (washing hands and distancing)

  2. I dont think Antigua people understand how serious this situation really is. Am passing Costpro,IGA and Flow, the lines a ridiculous and most of these people are not wearing any mask and they are so close to each other.. Talk and laughing with each other. Am so disappointed in how reckless these people are being.

    • They’ll understand when we start burying bodies without funeral services. It’s happening everywhere. No more than 10 people present, including the funeral staff.

  3. In this CRISIS Antiguans are trying to be so POLITICALLY correct. The Health Minister will give away MASKS to all Antiguans.Wear the DAMN Mask and shut up. I find there is too much talking on the Radio. The Opposition always trying to score CHEAP political points. This is a CRISIS.Smarten up Antiguans. People are dying around the world. Don’t wait before too late.Prime Minister and Health Minister and All the Doctors and Nurses are doing a wonderful JOB

      Always enjoy reading your contributions. You are correct. I listened to the SNAKE PIT on Observer Radio last evening. Knight is damaging the Observer Brand.Also Knight is destroying the UPP. Knight sensationalized everything. Antiguans please follow the PROFESSIONALS in this CRISIS. Do not listen to RHETORIC.

  4. The sudden announcement of 24hour curfew has everyone rushing around trying to get prepared for a 7 day shutdown! I believe people are now panicking how they will get food and so on that’s why you’re seeing all the crowds, before the announcement people were pacing themselves, supermarkets were empty and a steady flow was trickling in, but now people were not given sensible or clear directives with the initial 24 hour curfew announcement of how they will be able to go shopping throughout the 24 hour curfew for the next seven days. Also again from what I have understood, now people will still be forced to all go to the pharmacies and supermarkets in an even more constricted time frame 7am-12pm throughout the next 7 days, this is really flawed and may still cause too many people to still congregate in large numbers in queues as stores cannot let more than a certain number of persons in at a time!!! What should happen is that you should be allowed to go to the supermarket and pharmacies at normal daily hours from 7-6pm or 7-5pm this will mean people will be less likely to congregate within a 5 hour window! For 100k people living on Island this would be more realistic. What has just happened with all the crowds everywhere is a misunderstanding and fear of not being allowed out for the next 7 days, so nobody is taking a chance to be without what they need in that time, thus we now seeing involuntary crowds of people everywhere trying to get through!!
    I’m sure the persons standing in all the queues yesterday and today didn’t want to have to endure that situation at all and are themselves very concerned about having to stand in large queues to get what they need for 7 days… I think this element of the curfew needs to be thought about and done much better, for the sake of preventing too many people gathering at once…
    I’m positive we will find our way through this, but a more realistic window of time per day for persons to get essential supplies and having access to pharmacies will help to keep things in order and avoid large numbers of people of being in the same places at the same time.

  5. A mask is use, to trap unwanted particles from entering into your body!
    Now, with all this time, that People have on their hands, they should be able to make something, as simple, as a mask.

    A…micro fibre cloth
    D…eucalyptus, oregano, mint, fevergrass oil.

    Two pieces of micro fibre cloth with Cotton stitched between them, elastic to go around your head, and a drop or two of oregano, eucalyptus, mint, sage oil as aroma therapy.

    Can be washed after each use, in soap and water!
    Get the children involved, you have time!

    Why, MUST the government be the sole provider?

    Oh, and by the way, it’s alleged, that China is exporting defective COVID-19 products, now, when this start, prior to, during or after COVID-19 presented itself on their shores.

    The Art Of War, is shadowed by, The Art Of Deception!

    RASpect…in One Heart, One Love, One Aim, One Destiny! It’s needed now, more than ever!🇦🇬🖤❤💛💚🇦🇬🍍🍍🍍

    • Shortly, the US prez will be accepting their offer to help (if he forgets his false pride). They (China) will probably be the first to find the vaccine. As for the allegation regarding China, there was a situation where a Chinese company (not on the authorized list) sold a bad batch of tests (about 9k) to a Spanish company. It was detected early and has been sent back. Brethren, European countries including the UK, have accepted help from China in dealing with Covid 19, since they recognize xenophobia will not be aiding in saving lives

      • So, “a bad batch of test kits,” were sold.
        Now, before that batch was detected, do you think that’s the only batch which was shipped?
        As, for a vaccine, research the Pharmaceutical companies owned, by the Bill & Melinda gates foundation. Don’t be surprised, as to what you come up with.
        Vaccines are ready, they simply have to get the “masses” mentally prepared, to accept it.
        This crisis is not about China, and xenophobia but about, the Orders which controls HUE-manity.

        The Art Of War is Shadowed by The Art Of Deception.

        You will live long enough, to see the flip side, of the coin!

      • Now, how difficult was that?
        One, 2, three and voila custom masks, at the ready!
        They could probably churn out, several thousands in a day, thus, in two(2) weeks, there should be no need for those Chinese masks, some of which, again are allegedly defective!

        Now, guarne go plant some food, because this will run into the next tourist season, and said Industry, tourism that is, might have to channel the Phoenix Bird, not Papa Bird, to rise from the ashes!

        Go well, be well…

  6. Maybe now, knowing we can leave our homes to purchase groceries, we won’t be swarming the supermarkets.. some times we as Antiguans are not rational thinkers.. a lot of the behavior happening on the island right now isn’t necessary at all. Educate yourself on the virus and stop listening to all these voice messages. Be safe, stay indoors.. there are so many people still going by their friends and to the hairdresser and nails shops. Let’s just be smart and stay in people.. there are people in their homes still cooking and selling food and having people come for this and that .. this is serious. We need to do better

  7. You really don’t need a mask unless you have symptoms and then you should stay at home.
    Bigger problem for the world is China just reopened it’s
    Wet market’s where covid-19 came from with some help
    The laboratory up the road.

    But by Ali means give every one a dusk mask if it makes you feel better.

    • The world guidelines are being changed. You are now strongly advised to wear your mask.

      Please check daily for updates and changes. Remember this is a novel Coronavirus; it is new so we are still learning about it.

      Be safe.

  8. At this moment I cant pressure any government but the chinese about covid19…te down played the risks even deaths. So no country really knew what was coming until Italy and Spain started to report. We all just need to do our part.

  9. ANTIGUANS WAKE UP !!!! This VIRUS is REAL REAL . Stop the blame game. If this Hit Antigua it will be far too late. Thousands are dying all over the world. Smarten UP.

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