WORLDWIDE HEALTH ALERT - COVID-19 UPDATE

Updated on 6 May 2020


The Situation: As of Wednesday, 6 May, there are 3,682,968 confirmed COVID-19 cases worldwide – over 158,000 more cases than Monday. This data includes 257,906 deaths and 1,207,548 recoveries. A total of 187 countries are reporting confirmed cases. CDC adds six symptoms to Covid-19 list: chills, repeated shaking with chills, muscle pain, headache, sore throat, and new loss of taste or smell. Countries around the world beginning to ease lockdowns as daily infections and deaths slow while some are continuing to maintain and/or increase restrictions. Vaccine trials are under way in the U.S., Europe and China, but will take 12-18 months to be fully developed and released to the public. Officials say more than half dozen vaccine programs are in the clinical phase and over 80 are in preliminary phase.


Researchers suggest social distancing measures might be necessary into 2022 without an effective treatment or vaccine. Globally, countries – and in the U.S. state governors – begin to outline plans to restart their economies. Public health officials around the world say the only way to keep the death toll from growing quickly is to extend lockdowns.


Below is an example of the virus’ progression from inception to reported numbers:

The U.N. Secretary General: “the pandemic is the world’s biggest challenge since World War II” as a U.N. report estimates that 25 million jobs could be lost worldwide. Experts are saying the number of cases and deaths worldwide are “seriously under-counted” due to mild cases that are missed, lack of testing and governments underplaying the pandemic’s impact.

U.N. World Food Programme warns that global hunger could double and the number of people facing acute food insecurity could hit 265 million in the wake of the pandemic.


Europe

  • European Union forecasts “a recession of historic proportions this year” due to coronavirus, predicting a drop on output of over 7%.

  • Spain reports 244 deaths after three days below 200 . Also reported 996 new cases.

  • Germany to fully reopen stores and schools in May. Reported 947 new cases and 165 deaths.

  • U.K.’s death toll now the highest in Europe, passing Spain and Italy.

o Three-phase plan to move out of lockdown has been drawn up. Lockdown to be reviewed by government by Thursday, May 9.

Eurasia

  • Russia reports 10,559 new cases marking 4th consecutive day of daily new cases being over 10,000. Total stands at 165,929. The death toll added 86 to reach 1,537 total.

Asia

  • Indonesia reported 484 new cases Tuesday, a record daily high, bringing total to 12,071, the second highest total in SE Asia behind Singapore.

o Postpones elections until December

  • Philippines cases pass 10,000 mark after adding 320 infections. 21 more deaths push total toll to 658.

o Health Department: At least 100 patients to trial test Japanese anti-flu drug Avigan as part of clinical trial.

  • Hong Kong government has a zero tolerance policy for any who try to evade quarantine orders. Has ordered over 173,000 people into compulsory quarantine since the beginning of the outbreak and through a 2nd wave of the outbreak, after coming from outside borders.

o Has not reported a local case in over two weeks.

o New guidelines to take affect Friday.

o Schools to reopen end of May.

  • China reports two new cases Tuesday – both “imported”. No new deaths.

o Shanghai Disneyland to reopen with limited attendance and enhanced health and safety measures.

o NE border town of Suifenhe, in Heilongjiang province, is loosening restrictions, lowering epidemic response level to low risk.

  • Singapore reports 788 new cases, bringing total to 20,198. Reports that country is not yet halfway through outbreak.

o Migrant workers account for almost 90% of confirmed cases.

  • South Korea reports no local transmission cases.

Middle East

  • Pakistan reports 40 new deaths, a new daily high and 1,049 new cases Tuesday. Monday was highest new case total with 1,315.

o Lockdown is to expire on 9 May as of right now.

o Mosques reopened for congregational services in late April in push/pull between religious and political leaders. Cases have been climbing and are expected to reach 130,000 by the end of May.

  • 3 March: WHO’s regional director for the eastern Mediterranean calls for countries in the region to “be more aggressive” in testing and tracing efforts


Africa

  • 17 April: WHO Africa – a tentative projection shows that cases in Africa could hit as many as 10 million in 3-6 months.

  • 10 March: The WHO says some African countries could peak in next couple weeks, observing that numbers have doubled over past 4 days with concerns over lack of testing.

  • More than half of Africa’s 54 countries have implemented lockdowns, travel ban, curfews or other restrictive measures in efforts to stem the spread of coronavirus. Leaders warn that the continent faces economic collapse if financial assistance isn’t provided to the millions that are out of work.

  • There has been an increase in reports of police and military abuses of civilians. A 13-year-old boy was shot and killed in the Mathare area of northeastern Nairobi, Kenya earlier this week. Other reports coming from Uganda and other countries as well.

Oceania

  • New Zealand reports one confirmed case & one probable. Also 1 new death, its 21st.

South/Central America

  • Brazil’s Amazonas state capital Manaus has become epicenter for outbreak in the country as hospitals and cemeteries are filling fast.

  • UN’s Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights has called for an investigation into a prison riot in western Venezuela that left 75 injured and 46 dead. Incident happened Friday at the Los Llanos penitentiary in Portuguesa state and occurred shortly after prison officials barred family members from bringing food to prisoners.

  • Unrest in prisons over conditions have been reported in several countries across Latin America. 23 were killed in a prison riot in Colombia last month.

  • 24 March: At least 44 attacks against medical workers have been reported in Mexico since mid-March. Mexico is reporting 11,633 confirmed cases and 1,069 deaths.

Canada

  • 20 April: Canada says border restrictions with U.S. will remain in place for some time as both countries battle the virus.

U.S.

  • U.S. cases rose to 1,204,475 confirmed cases, 71,078 total deaths and 189,791 recovered.

  • 21 April: U.S. CDC director Dr. Robert Redfield, warns a second wave of coronavirus during next fall/winter’s flu season could be deadly and states should start preparing now.

  • On April 16, US President Trump’s guidelines for moving out of stay-at-home restrictions suggests that states start reopening businesses, restaurants and others by 1 May or earlier as governors deem appropriate for their state.

  • On April 14, President Trump announced a temporary halt in funding to the World Health Organization until a review can be conducted on the WHO’s initial handling of COVID-19 in China.

  • Federal stay-at-home measures and social distancing guidelines were extended through 30 April.

  • Dr. Fauci says it would “not be surprising” to see 100,000 deaths in U.S. from the coronavirus. High end projections put number of U.S. deaths at around 200,000.


Please note changes to the following chart: Numbers in ( ) reflect ranking of country in the previous report on 4 May for comparison. New countries to reach the top 25 and data are in red. New numbers are in red and numbers from last report are in black.

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.


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 and other hot spots around the globe.

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

  • Specialized quarantines based on needs per country.

  • Travel Ban on Europe – to take affect Friday, March 13 at midnight, no travel from Schengen Area countries.

o From DHS: These countries, known as the Schengen Area, include: Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, and Switzerland. This does not apply to legal permanent residents, (generally) immediate family members of U.S. citizens, and other individuals who are identified in the proclamation. LINK

o The Department of State advises U.S. citizens to avoid all international travel due to the global impact of COVID-19.

* In countries where commercial departure options remain available, U.S. citizens who live in the United States should arrange for immediate return to the United States, unless they are prepared to remain abroad for an indefinite period. · Chills sometimes with repeated shaking

· Headache

* U.S. citizens who live abroad should avoid all international travel. Many countries are experiencing COVID-19 outbreaks and implementing travel restrictions and mandatory quarantines, closing borders, and prohibiting non-citizens from entry with little advance notice.

* Airlines have cancelled many international flights and several cruise operators have suspended operations or cancelled trips. If you choose to travel internationally, your travel plans may be severely disrupted, and you may be forced to remain outside of the United States for an indefinite timeframe.

o On March 14, the Department of State authorized the departure of U.S. personnel and family members from any diplomatic or consular post in the world who have determined they are at higher risk of a poor outcome if exposed to COVID-19 or who have requested departure based on a commensurate justification. These departures may limit the ability of U.S. Embassies and consulates to provide services to U.S. citizens.

  • Department of State – Information for Travelers - LINK

o Includes advise for U.S. citizens that are currently abroad with specific information for those in China, Europe and on cruise ships.

o Covid-19 virus related emergency numbers:

* From U.S. or Canada: 1-888-407-4747

* From Overseas: +1 202-501-4444

* Enroll in STEP - LINK

  • Current CDC Travel Alerts for Covid-19:

o Level 3 – Avoid all nonessential travel – Global COVID-19 Pandemic Notice – Widespread Ongoing Transmission - LINK

o See LINK for all current travel alerts by country


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 (usually dry) and/or sore throat

  • Fatigue

  • Chills sometimes with repeated shaking

  • Headache

  • Muscle aches or pain

  • Diarrhea, nausea, and/or vomiting

  • Loss of smell and/or taste (uncommon)

  • Confusion, stroke-like symptoms, and/or seizures (rare)

  • 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, Northern Italy, South Korea, certain areas in the United States and other notable hotspots where transmission is high or on the rise across the globe.

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

  • Travelers who return from infected areas should self-quarantine

  • Practice social distancing at the workplace and in public spaces

  • 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

  • Large scale gatherings should be avoided

  • 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, entry/exit requirements and restrictions, etc.)

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


Affected Travelers and others:

All travelers have the potential for exposure


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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