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02 Aug 2020 | 11:53 PM UTC

Bolivia: Government extends quarantine measures through August 31 due to COVID-19 /update 15

Bolivian authorities extend national quarantine measures through August 31 due to COVID-19; follow government directives

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Event

Bolivian authorities have extended the national quarantine measures in place through August 31 due to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic. Under these measures, there is a ban on public gatherings with the exception of religious services, provided they respect social distancing measures. A curfew between 18:00 and 05:00 (local time), Monday to Friday, remains in effect. The wearing of face masks is mandatory and social distancing measures must be respected. In addition, international flights remain suspended, and all borders remain closed. Returning Bolivian citizens and residents, diplomats, members of special missions and NGOs, essential workers, and cargo remain, however, exempt from the border closure.

On Monday, July 27, the government issued a decree declaring a state of public calamity due to the virus. The decree will allow authorities to lend money from Bolivia's Central Bank as well as to make additional funds available to manage the COVID-19 pandemic. The announcement comes after at least 15 government figures tested positive for the virus as of Monday evening, including the country's interim president, Jeanine Áñez.

As of Sunday, August 2, there have been 80,153 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the country, and 3153 associated fatalities. Further international spread of the virus is expected in the near term.

Context

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.

Advice

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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