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19 Apr 2020 | 12:52 AM UTC

Poland: Government to ease some COVID-19 restrictions from April 20 /update 9

Polish government to reopen forests and parks and ease other COVID-19 restrictions from April 20; follow all government directives



Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki announced on Thursday, April 16, that some coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions will begin to ease on Monday, April 20. Forests and parks will reopen and more people will be allowed to enter stores at one time. More than five people will also be able to attend religious services as long as there is only one person per 15 sq meters. Recreational activity for individuals over the age of 13 is allowed as long as a mask is worn and suitable social distancing is followed. Farmers are exempt from having to wear a facemask while working. Other restrictions including a ban on gatherings and the order to wear a mask in public remain in effect.

Passenger air traffic and international rail traffic will remain suspended until April 26. Additionally, land borders will remain closed until Sunday, May 3, though exemptions will continue to be made for Polish nationals, residents, and those with valid work permits. All Polish citizens and residents returning to the country will be required to undergo a 14-day quarantine.

As of April 18, 8742 cases of COVID-19 and 347 associated fatalities have been confirmed in the country. Further international spread of the virus is expected over 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). 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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