On Saturday, March 14, Croatian Civil Protection Staff announced that all foreign nationals traveling from the UK, France, Germany, Switzerland, Sweden, Italy, Spain, Austria, Netherlands, part of Slovenia, China, Hong Kong, South Korea, Japan, Malaysia, Singapore, Bahrain, and Iran will be required to undergo a mandatory 14-day self-isolation or quarantine upon arrival to Croatia to limit the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19). Croatian nationals traveling from the aforementioned areas will be required to also undergo a 14-day self-isolation or self-quarantine but at home.
Authorities recommended that gatherings of more than 100 people be suspended, and that sports events and entertainment activities such as concerts also be suspended. Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic announced on Friday, March 13, that schools and universities will close for two weeks from Monday, March 16.
As of 18:30 (local time) on March 14, health officials have confirmed 38 cases of COVID-19. Further international spread of COVID-19 is to be 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, and difficulty breathing, seek medical care urgently and share your previous travel history with your health care provider.