The Chilean government announced on Wednesday, August 19, the revision of a number of restrictions linked to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) effective from Friday, August 21. The nationwide curfew will be run from between 23:00 and 05:00 (local time). Additionally, the communes of Ovalle in Limarí province, Penco and Tomѐ in Concepción province, and Punta Arenas in Magallanes province will be placed under quarantine. In Juan Fernández commune in Valparaíso province, restrictions will be eased from Phase 3 (Preparation) to Phase 4 (Initial Opening) of the government's five-phased reopening plan, which includes the partial reopening of restaurants and some public entertainment venues. Quarantine measures between Monday and Friday will be lifted in Los Andes commune in Valparaíso province in addition to the city of Curicó. The measures, which denote a change from Phase 1 (Quarantine) to Phase 2 (Transition) will also take place in the Santiago Metropolitan Region communes of Padre Hurtado, Peñaflor, Peñalolén, and San José del Maipo. Quarantines will be reimposed in the Bio Bio province communes of Concepción, Hualpén, and Talcahuano as authorities tighten restrictions in these areas from Phrase 3 (Preparation) to Phase 2 (Transition). A number of other communes in the country remain under restrictions, a list of which can be found here.
The country's borders remain closed to foreign travelers until further notice. The restrictions do not apply to Chilean nationals, and citizens and permanent residents are still permitted to enter the country. The closure does not apply to freight operations and associated personnel.
As of Thursday, August 20, there have been 390,037 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Chile with 10,578 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 COVID-19 call emergency services before going to the doctor or hospital to prevent the potential spread of the disease.
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