Algerian authorities announced on Thursday, April 23, that they would be easing coronavirus disease (COVID-19) lockdown and restrictive measures in particular areas from Friday, April 24, the first day of Ramadan. According to reports, the government agreed that the full lockdown which has been in place in Blida province since Monday, March 30, will be lifted and replaced with a nighttime curfew. The curfew will be observed from 14:00 to 07:00 (local time). Further, the nighttime curfew currently in place in the nine provinces of Algiers, Oran, Béjaïa, Sétif, Tizi Ouzou, Tipaza, Tlemcen, Aïn Defla, and Médéa, has been shortened to run from 17:00 to 07:00. Reports indicate that the curfew observed in the other provinces of the country between 19:00 to 07:00 will remain place without change.
All land borders remain closed and the suspension of all air and maritime links, except for those transporting goods, remains in place. A ban on all marches and rallies, and the closure of mosques nationwide is also in effect. Authorities have also ordered all cafes and restaurants in major cities to close as a precautionary measure. Schools, universities, and sporting events have also been suspended.
To date, there have been 3007 confirmed cases of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Algeria, with 407 associated fatalities.
The first case of COVID-19 was reported on December 31 and the source of the outbreak has been linked to a wet market in Wuhan (Hubei province, China). Human-to-human and patient-to-medical staff transmission of the virus have been confirmed. Many of the associated fatalities have been due to pneumonia caused by the virus.
Cases of the virus have been confirmed in numerous countries and territories worldwide. Virus-screening and quarantining measures are being implemented at airports worldwide, as well as extensive travel restrictions. On March 11, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the global outbreak a pandemic.
Pneumonia symptoms include dry cough, chest pain, fever, and labored breathing. Pneumonia can be contagious and can be transmitted from human to human. The influenza virus, or the flu, is a common cause of viral pneumonia.
Measures adopted by local authorities evolve quickly and are usually effective immediately. Depending on the evolution of the outbreak in other countries, authorities are likely to modify, at very short notice, the list of countries whose travelers are subject to border control measures or entry restrictions upon their arrival to the territory in question. It is advised to postpone nonessential travel due to the risk that travelers may be refused entry or be subject to quarantine upon their arrival or during their stay.
To reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission, travelers are advised to abide by the following measures:
- Frequently clean hands by applying an alcohol-based hand rub or washing with soap and water.
- When coughing and sneezing, cover mouth and nose with a flexed elbow or tissue; if used, throw the tissue away immediately and wash hands.
- If experiencing a fever, cough, difficulty breathing, or any other symptoms suggestive of respiratory illness, including pneumonia, call emergency services before going to the doctor or hospital to prevent the potential spread of the disease.
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