Puerto Rico requires proof of COVID-19 vaccine and negative test for large events – Orlando Sentinel
Given the increase in cases of COVID-19, Puerto Rico’s Gov. Pedro Pierluisi signed an executive order Sunday that requires both a
vaccination card and a negative coronavirus test to attend large public events on the island.
The rules will be required of all establishments as of Wednesday, Dec. 22. A negative PCR or antigen test must be performed 48 hours or less before the event.
The order covers any venue in which activities are held that promote the gathering of people, including in theaters, amphitheatres, stadiums, arenas, convention centers and activities.
The governor, who did not establish a booster dose of the COVID-19 vaccine as a requirement to enter establishments and events, also highlighted the importance of using masks.
“Given the trend registered in recent days, I am signing this new executive order and I will continue to be vigilant and attentive to the statistics and recommendations to establish new measures, if necessary,” the governor said. “Puerto Rico has been a national and global example in terms of vaccination, and in complying with the measures to counteract this pandemic and we cannot lower our guard.“
In Puerto Rico, despite being one of the places in the United States where the spread of COVID-19 has been kept at bay, the governor stated in the order the daily average of confirmed cases has been 461 positive cases and 412 probable
Just a week ago, the daily average of confirmed cases was 85 positive cases and 36 probable cases, according to the Health Department. At the same time, the positivity rate rose to 13% on Monday, which represents a considerable increase compared to a week ago when it was 2.65%.
A large number of these infections arose after two mega concerts by the rapper Bad Bunny at which about 100,000 people were present. Three days ago the Health Department confirmed that positive cases of COVID-19 in Bad Bunny concerts increased to 400.
The increase in cases also led to the cancellation of the Miss World pageant due to dozens of cases reported between contestants and the production team.
The governor stressed that despite the fact that “many people with COVID-19 have no symptoms,” they can spread the virus. “Therefore, screening tests before a massive event allows detecting people who are infected with the virus before they can spread it and preventing these events from becoming significant outbreaks.”
The new rules will not apply to religious events or public events where government services are provided.
Events with less than 500 people will not have to coordinate with the Health Department to establish the protocol, but all visitors will be required to wear masks at all times.