COVID-19 Update

Updated on 9 March 2020



The Situation:

As of Monday, 9 March, there are over 110,200 confirmed COVID-19 cases worldwide. These numbers include 3,841 deaths and 62,109 recoveries. A total of 108 countries are reporting confirmed as numbers of cases and deaths continue to change rapidly. As of this report, there are 44,775 active cases with 5,979 listed as serious or critical (13%).


Europe continues to see sharp increases in the number of cases. Germany nearly doubled the reported new cases and France almost tripled. Italy cases and deaths spiked while the northern region was placed on lockdown. Meanwhile, new cases in China and South Korea are slowing. China reported only 44 and 40 cases Saturday and Sunday, respectively.


Italy

The Italian government-imposed quarantines on 11 communes in the northern region in an effort to stem the spread. Public gatherings were also banned. Numbers of infected have reached over 7,300 with 366 deaths reported.


South Korea

South Korea saw its smallest number of new cases on Sunday with only 248 being reported and the fourth day in a row that the number has been lower than the day before. Daegu and Cheongdo are “special care zones”

  • Majority of South Korea’s cases are in Daegu and centered around members of the same church

  • City of Gyeongsan (just east of Daegu) declared third “special care zone” Thursday with 282 total cases, the majority of which are linked to the church in Daegu.


Iran

Iran is seeing the world’s third worst outbreak outside of mainland China. Currently the number of confirmed cases stands at 6,566 with 194 deaths.


Japan

Concerns over testing requirements in Japan as experts speculate that the actual cases total in the country is much higher. Only 8,111 tests have been conducted as of 4 March even though officials claim capabilities to test 3,800 a day. Japan totals 511 cases and 17 deaths.



Other significant factors for consideration:

  • Experts estimated the actual number of cases could be much higher than what is being officially recorded and reported. If that is true, the mortality rate could be much lower.

  • Men were also disproportionately affected during MERS and SARS outbreaks.

  • Women, in general, have a stronger immune response than men.

  • China accounts for nearly a third of the world’s smokers with more than half of the men smoking compared to just over 2% of China’s women smoking.


Cases in the US

Grand Princess cruise ship, with 21 confirmed cases on board, to dock in Oakland, CA, sometime Monday.


U.S. cases jump to over 500 with 34 states, including the nation’s capital,


Travel Effects:

  • Many countries have urged citizens to reconsider travel or avoid nonessential travel to China and avoid all travel to Hubei.

  • Airlines around the world suspended services to all or some of China

  • Several countries banned foreigners who recently traveled to China and/or are Chinese passport holders and increased health screening measure at ports of entry

  • Chinese nationals restricted from booking international flights out of the country

  • The Chinese government ordered 65 million people in Hubei Province to remain at home in an effort to contain Covid-19, allowing one family member out every three days for food and essentials and in cases of an emergencies. The use of private cars has been banned indefinitely.

  • Specialized quarantines based on needs per country.


Current CDC Travel Alerts for Covid-19:

Level 3 – Avoid all nonessential travel


Level 2 – Practice Enhanced Precautions


Level 1 – Practice usual precautions


Other Destinations with Apparent Community Spread:

Community spread means people have been infected with the virus, including some who are not sure how or where they became infected. At this time, the extent of virus spread is not sustained or widespread enough to meet the criteria for a travel notice.

Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand


Symptoms to Watch Out For: Officials say the respiratory disease, is capable of spreading through human-to-human contact, droplets carried through sneezing and coughing, and germs left on inanimate objects. The virus might spread during the incubation period – which is believed to be from 1 to 14 days. Be on the lookout for the following symptoms:

  • High fever

  • Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath

  • Cough and/or sore throat

  • Muscle Aches in some cases also being reported

  • Pneumonia (secondary infection)


Mitigating Measures to Apply:

  • Monitor local authorities for updates

  • Avoid travel to or through China (including layovers) and specifically through Wuhan and Hubei province

  • Avoid non-essential travel to areas where the infection is known or spreading rapidly

  • Travelers who return from infected areas should self-quarantine

  • Consider work from home arrangements for employees in locations where the virus is spreading or if employees must transit through those areas

  • Employees who feel ill or who have flu-like, respiratory or other symptoms should consider self-quarantine and or stay at home instead of attending office or other functions

  • Weigh the risks of conducting large scale gatherings where the virus is located and the potential for attendees to transit through higher risk areas

  • Avoid contact with animals (alive or dead), animal markets, and products that come from animals (such as uncooked meat)

  • Wash hands frequently with soap and water; use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water isn’t available

  • Older travelers and those with underlying health issues may be at higher risk and should speak to their healthcare provider before travel

  • Avoid exposure to those presenting the above symptoms

  • Avoid populated areas and gatherings if you feel ill (if at all possible)

  • Allow extra time for temperature screening at airports worldwide

  • Enroll in a Safe Traveler Program to receive warnings from your preferred embassy

  • Seek medical care immediately if you experience symptoms and have recently traveled to the infected areas; notify your healthcare provider of your recent travel

  • Confirm travel schedule is not impacted by the coronavirus (including quarantines, which may be individually-imposed, visit/visa restrictions etc.)

  • Ensure the validity of all visas prior to travel as this could be subject to restrictions and changes


DISCLAIMER and Hold Harmless

Disclaimer: LSDS™ gathers information from multiple sources and offers insight and perspective to travelers. Sources cannot be validated for accuracy in every instance. Travelers assume all risk associated with their travel and are responsible for the decisions associated with travel and for their own safety. Users of this reference document agree, to hold harmless LSDS™ (LLC) its employees and clients associated with any risk or injury incurred during travel.

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