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11 Nov 2020 | 12:32 PM UTC

Ukraine: Authorities impose weekend lockdowns until November 30 /update 23

Authorities impose weekend lockdowns until November 30; heed official instructions

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Event

The Ukrainian government has announced that weekend curfews will be in place until November 30 in order to address the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19). Commencing from 00:00hrs (local time) on Saturdays until 00:00 on Mondays, non-essential businesses and cultural institutions will close. Exempted services include food shops, post offices, financial services, pharmacies, transport, and petrol stations.

On September 28, COVID-19-related entry restrictions for non-resident foreign nationals were lifted. The easing of restrictions was on the condition that individuals entering the country provide proof of travel insurance that covers the cost of COVID-19 observation and treatment. Additionally, the insurance must either be provided by a domestic insurance company or by an international one with a representation or partnership in Ukraine. Foreign residents residing in Ukraine, refugees, and diplomats are exempt from the requirement. Authorise have also classified countries as either 'red' or 'green'. Those arriving from 'red' countries must provide a negative COVID-19 test prior taken no more than 48 hours prior to arrival in Ukraine. Those who cannot do so will be required to undergo 14 days quarantine at a government facility or at private accommodation, so long as they have downloaded the 'Dii Vdoma' tracking app. A list of 'green' and 'red' countries can be found here.

Commercial international and domestic flights have resumed operations, as has public transport between regions on a reduced scale. Face masks remain mandatory in public spaces and on public transportation. Restrictions to services and permitted activities are based on whether areas are designated 'green', 'yellow', 'orange' and 'red' zones for COVID-19 cases. In 'green' zones social distancing and mask-wearing requirements are in place, in addition to a limit on gatherings to 50 people. In 'red' zones, gatherings are banned, public transport is suspended, in addition to inter-city trains, and non-essential businesses are not permitted to operate. In 'orange' zones, restaurants and entertainment facilities operate on limited hours. A map of current zones can be found here.

As of Wednesday, November 11, health authorities have confirmed 504,423 cases of COVID-19 in Ukraine with 9214 associated fatalities. Further international spread of the virus is to be 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 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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