Barbados will no longer have to rely on the Trinidad and Tobago based Caribbean public health agency, Carpha as its new state of the art public health reference laboratory is to be opened soon.
That's the word from Minister of Health, John Boyce.
The US government has provided the majority of funding for the lab.
The health minister is optimistic the new lab will also have the capacity to extend its services to the wider Caribbean.
Meanwhile, with increased air travel, Mr Boyce reiterated Barbados commitment to international health regulations.
He is adamant that information remains a critical tool to addressing any public health crisis.
He says Barbados recognises that Zika is a disease of international significance requiring special action.
And he says the country has been working with local, regional and international partners to ensure the safety of the population.
Mr. Boyce was speaking during a regional Zika tech camp.
Local public health professionals and government officials involved in health communications are among the dozens taking part in the camp which is aimed at increasing their knowledge of technologies so they will better communicate with the population about Zika and other epidemics.
Mr Boyce says guidelines have been developed and updated for testing and monitoring of pregnant women along with children born to mothers with Zika.
Efforts also continue to remove potential breeding sites for mosquitoes.