Severity: Critical Alert

Exit/Entry: Czech Republic to ease coronavirus entry restrictions for travelers from Romania on Sept. 14; face coverings mandatory in all indoors areas.

Alert Begins 11 Sep 2020 08:56 PM UTC
Alert Expires 30 Sep 2020 11:59 PM UTC

  • Incident: COVID-19 restrictions
  • Location(s): Nationwide (map)
  • Time Frame: Indefinite
  • Impact: Business and travel disruptions

Summary
Beginning Sept. 14, authorities in the Czech Republic will ease coronavirus disease (COVID-19) entry restrictions for travelers arriving from Romania. Travelers from Romania will no longer be required to self-isolate upon arrival. Additionally, health officials are mandating the use of protective face coverings for all indoor areas, including public transportation and events with more than 100 people. Private residences, classrooms in schools, and children under the age of two are exempt from the mandate. Most domestic business activity has resumed, provided strict hygiene and social distancing measures are observed.

Travelers from EEA countries - with the exception of Spain - as well as persons arriving from Australia, Canada, Japan, New Zealand, South Korea, Switzerland, Thailand, Tunisia, and the UK, are allowed to enter the country without restriction. Travelers returning from Spain can take a COVID-19 test immediately upon arrival and submit the results to the relevant regional hygiene station within 72 hours. Such individuals are required to limit their movements to include only work-related activities, education-related activities, procurement of essential goods and medical services, and taking care of animals or children until the results are known. If the test is positive, a 14-day self-isolation period is mandatory. Travel is prohibited from all other countries. Exceptions to the travel ban include residents of countries where travel restrictions have been lifted, close family members of Czech residents, diplomats, transport workers, and for urgent circumstances decided on a case-by-case basis.

All restrictions are subject to amendment at short notice in response to government reviews and may receive updates or extensions in the coming days.

Background and Analysis
Authorities could reintroduce sporadic, targeted measures in response to local COVID-19 outbreaks. Such measures could apply to districts, neighborhoods, or even specific facilities, including schools, factories, or accommodation and office blocks.

Advice
Follow all official instructions. Abide by national health and safety measures. Reconfirm all travel arrangements. Consider delaying traveling if experiencing symptoms associated with COVID-19, as they may prompt increased scrutiny and delays. Liaise with trusted contacts for further updates and guidance. Maintain contact with your diplomatic representation. Ensure contingency plans account for further disruptive measures or extensions of current restrictions. Reconsider and reconfirm nonemergency health appointments.

Emphasize basic health precautions, especially frequent handwashing with soap and water, or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water are unavailable. Practice good coughing/sneezing etiquette (i.e., covering coughs and sneezes with a disposable tissue, maintaining distance from others, and washing hands). There is no evidence that the influenza vaccine, antibiotics, or antiviral medications will prevent this disease, highlighting the importance of diligent basic health precautions.


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