Due to health risks and criminal activity, the US government, acting via the State Department, has advised its nationals to exercise caution when visiting Jamaica. US citizens are advised to reevaluate their plans to visit Jamaica, according to a notice on the State Department website.
The advisory warned, “Reconsider travel to Jamaica due to crime and violence.”
- Advertisement -
Regarding medical services, the State Department released the following advice:
“Emergency services and hospital care vary throughout the island, and response times and quality of care may vary from US standards. Public hospitals are under-resourced and cannot always provide high-level or specialized care. Private hospitals require payment upfront before admitting patients and may not have the ability to provide specialized care.”
It further added, “Ambulance services are not always readily available, especially in rural areas, and are not always staffed by trained personnel.”
The warning then emphasized, “We strongly encourage you to obtain traveler’s insurance, including medical evacuation insurance, before traveling to Jamaica. The Department of State does not pay medical bills.”
Regarding criminal activity, the advice said that “local police often do not respond effectively to serious criminal incidents. When arrests are made, cases are infrequently prosecuted to a conclusive sentence. Families of US citizens killed in accidents or homicides frequently wait a year or more for final death certificates to be issued by Jamaican authorities. The homicide rate reported by the Government of Jamaica has for several years been among the highest in the Western Hemisphere.”
The advisory then included a list of Jamaican areas that its people should avoid visiting.