Oslo authorities have announced tighter restrictions will come into effect in the city as of Tuesday, September 29, to curb further the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19). The restrictions, which will remain in place until at least October 13, include a ban on indoor events with over 50 participants unless seated, the compulsory use of face masks on public transport where a distance of 1 meter (3.2 ft) is not possible between passengers, and the requirement for all customers entering restaurants, cafes and other places where food is served to register themselves upon arrival.
Authorities on Saturday, September 26 also included new locations in their list of "high risk" international travel regions including Iceland, Lithuania, the Vasterbotten region in Sweden, and the Finnish regions of Central Finland and Paijanne-Hamedue. Travelers arriving from these locations must self-isolate for ten days upon arrival from Saturday.
All travelers arriving into the country from countries with more than 20 confirmed new COVID-19 cases per 100,000 population in the previous two weeks are required to quarantine on arrival. The full list of these countries can be found here.
As of Tuesday, September 29, there have been 13,861 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Norway with 274 associated fatalities. 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 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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