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14 Apr 2020 | 09:01 PM UTC

Romania: State of emergency extended for 30 days from April 15 /update 7

Romania extends state of emergency for 30 days from April 15 due to COVID-19; abide by all government directives

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Event

Romanian authorities extended an ongoing state of emergency on Tuesday, April 14, for 30 days from Wednesday, April 15, due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. President Klaus Iohannis urged residents to stay home and added that the government will develop corresponding measures. As of April 15, Suceava municipality and eight surrounding villages, as well as Țăndărei in Ialomița county are under quarantine due to community transmission of COVID-19. The affected villages in Suceava are Adâncata, Bosanci, Salcea, Ipotești, Moara, Șcheia, Pătrăuţi, and Mitocu Dragomirnei. Individuals are prohibited from entering and exiting the affected areas; the transportation of freight, medical assistance, and individuals who carry out essential economic activities are exempt from the measures. According to authorities, 70 percent of the country's COVID-19 cases were recorded in Bucharest, Suceava, Neamt, Timiş, Arad, Brasov, Hunedoara, Cluj, Constanta, Galaţi, and Ilfov.

The government has implemented a nationwide lockdown until further notice, banning individuals from leaving their homes for nonessential reasons and closing all businesses except for those selling food or pharmaceutical products and those providing veterinary services. Individuals arriving in Romania from Italy, Spain, France, Germany, and Iran are to be placed under mandatory 14-day quarantine in a state facility. All other individuals arriving from abroad are to be placed in home isolation for 14 days. These measures apply to all individuals regardless of nationality. Meanwhile, the country's borders remain closed to foreigners since Saturday, March 21; only foreigners who have family in Romania, those who maintain residency or long-term visas, and those who are traveling for business can enter the country.

As of April 14, there are at least 6879 cases of COVID-19 in Romania, including 346 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). 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 trouble 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.

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.