Togolese authorities imposed a 21:00 to 05:00 (local time) overnight curfew in the prefectures of Tchaoudjo, Tchamba, and Sotouboua on Tuesday, August 25, due to a spike in local coronavirus disease (COVID-19) cases. Local lockdowns have also been announced for the cities of Sokode, Tchamba, and Adjengre, where the majority of recently confirmed cases of the disease have been concentrated. The announcement came a week after the country's state of emergency due to the COVID-19 pandemic was extended until September 15.
However, some restrictions imposed due to the pandemic have been eased in recent weeks, with international and domestic flights allowed to resume on August 1. Those traveling to Togo will be required to complete an online form prior to departure, and download a tracking application during their stay, although media sources suggest that this app is not yet available. Travelers will also be required to take a PCR test on arrival and self-quarantine until results are sent to them via SMS or email. Those who test positive will be required to stay in quarantine, either at their own residence or a government facility, until they provide a negative test result. Departing travelers will be required to take a test 72 hours prior to their departure.
As of Thursday, August 27, there have been 1326 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Togo and 27 associated deaths. Further international spread of the virus is to be expected in the near term.
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). Since then, human-to-human transmission of the virus has been confirmed.
Cases of the virus have been confirmed in numerous countries and territories worldwide. On March 11, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the global outbreak a pandemic. Virus-screening and quarantining measures are being implemented at airports worldwide, as well as extensive travel restrictions.
The most common symptoms of COVID-19 are fever, dry cough, and tiredness. Some patients may experience other symptoms such as body pains, nasal congestion, headache, conjunctivitis, sore throat, diarrhea, loss of taste or smell or a rash on skin or discoloration of fingers or toes. These symptoms (in most cases mild) appear gradually. Generally, most patients (around 80 percent) recover from the disease without being hospitalized.
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 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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