Authorities in Ticino canton have announced tighter restrictions due to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic from Monday, November 9, until November 30. Gatherings within the canton of over five people are banned in public and private contexts. Religious ceremonies such as weddings and funerals are now limited to an attendance of up to 30 people. In the cantons of Neuchâtel, Fribourg, Jura, Vaud, and Valais, bars and restaurants are closed whilst in Geneva, all non-essential shops and businesses.
On October 28, Swiss authorities announced new measures to address the spread of COVID-19. Dance clubs closed and in-person college classes ceased from November 2. All bars and restaurants must close from 23:00 (local time). Limits have been also been placed on sporting and leisure activities. Face masks are mandatory in offices, secondary schools, and in outdoor areas where social-distancing measures cannot be followed. The mandatory wearing of masks in all enclosed public spaces was implemented on October 19.
As of November 9, health authorities have reported 229,222 COVID-19 cases in Switzerland, with 2823 associated fatalities. Further spread of the disease is expected in the near to medium 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.