French Prime Minister Jean Castex announced that as of Friday, October 23, a 21:00 - 06:00 (local time) nightly curfew will be in place for Tahiti and Moorea, as new coronavirus disease (COVID-19) measures were announced for France and some overseas departments in an attempt to stem the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).
Commercial flights have resumed to French Polynesia; however, travelers are not permitted to travel to or from French Polynesia unless they are able to prove compelling family or professional grounds. Travelers are required to provide a negative reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) test taken in the 72 hours preceding arrival and complete a self-declaration of the absence of COVID-19 symptoms and contact with confirmed cases in the 14 days preceding arrival.
As of Saturday, October 24, there have been 5797 confirmed COVID-19 cases in French Polynesia with 20 associated deaths. Further international spread of the virus is 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). 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, and difficulty breathing, seek medical care urgently and share your previous travel history with your health care provider.