Healthier, safer tourism in Belize

The Ministries of Health and Tourism in Belize and the Belize Tourism Board is partnering with the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA), Caribbean Tourism Organisation (CTO) and the Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association (CHTA) to implement a joint Tourism and Health Program (THP) to improve the health, safety, and quality of our tourism product, and the health and well-being of our visitors and locals.

This novel, innovative program is addressing the health safety and environmental threats that impact on Caribbean to tourism through real time early alert and response system to tourism health and safety threats., food and environment safety training, hospitality standards and globally recognized certification and branding.

Participating facilities will be branded and accredited by CARPHA, CTO,CHTA as a preferred Healthier safer destination, allowing for a marketing and branding competitive advantage.

OBJECTIVES:  

  • Reduce illness in tourism and thereby promote increase visitor arrivals
  • To build a healthier, safer, better quality and more environmental friendly tourism industry – lead to more sustainable tourism.
  • To implement food & environmental safety, training. certification
  • To provide timely alert of health, environmental and social events, to support health monitoring efforts and stimulate a rapid and coordinated response
  • To promote a healthy workforce & reduce avoidable health costs
  • To increase awareness and promote mutual understanding and collaboration between tourism and health stakeholders to address tourism & health as a joint priority
  • To develop partnerships for sustainability of tourism

COMPONENTS:

The THP will address the HSE threats impacting sustainable tourism in the Caribbean through an integrated approach of combining surveillance, training, and standards.

Regional Tourism and Health Information System: Web based real time tourism surveillance system for early alerts and response to negative events; regional protocol/guidelines for managing illnesses in tourism for stay-over (hotels/guesthouses) and cruise ships arrivals for standardised response and users manuals and training to assist countries in improving their laboratory methods to test for pathogen and to respond to any HSE outbreaks in hotels and cruise ships. If you’re a participating hotel, feel free to visit this.carpha.org. Accommodation facilities are encouraged to register now to be eligible for recognition. The application form found here can be completed and submitted to the Ministry of Tourism.

Health, Safety and Environmental Sanitation (HSE) Standards and Certification: HSE standards are crucial for promoting healthier, safer better quality tourism products. This component will review national, regional and foreign best practices and update the existing regional standards to meet current regional & international HSE tourism standards and work with Regional and International Standards Organization to develop a recognized certification system.

Food Safety and Environmental Sanitation Training and Certification: This will include: advanced food and environmental safety and certification; HACCP, investigation, prevention and control of outbreaks, department specific food safety training and pathogen-specific training.

 

For more information on the Tourism and Health Program and other regional initiatives, please contact Eddie Herrera, Tourism Officer, at eddie.herrera@tourism.gov.bz