Entry/Exit: Norway will close its ports and airports from 0800 March 16 to stem the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

This alert affects Norway

This alert began 14 Mar 2020 22:49 GMT and is scheduled to expire 31 Mar 2020 23:59 GMT.

  • Incident: Travel restrictions
  • Location(s): Nationwide (map)
  • Start Time/Date: 0800 March 16
  • Impact: Entry and travel restrictions, transport and business disruptions, limited services, event cancellations

Summary
Norwegian officials announced March 14 that they would close the country's sea and air ports starting at 0800 March 16. There will be exemptions in place for Norwegians who are returning from abroad. The measure is intended to stem the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

Norwegian authorities have ordered from March 12 the closures of all kindergartens, schools, and universities. In addition, authorities have mandated a 14 day self-quarantine for travelers that have arrived in Norway from anywhere other than Scandinavia since Feb. 27. Authorities will also close sport, leisure, and entertainment venues throughout the country.

Authorities are likely to further increase restrictions throughout Norway in the coming days. As of March 14, more than 950 cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed in the country.

Background and Analysis
Older individuals, infants, and those with chronic illness are more susceptible to infection and are at increased risk for severe complications. Human-to-human transmission can occur, though it remains unclear how easily the virus spreads between people.

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is a viral respiratory disease caused by infection with the SARS-CoV-2 virus (previously known as 2019-nCoV). Symptoms occur 1-14 days following exposure (average of 3-7 days). These symptoms include fever, fatigue, cough, difficulty breathing, sometimes worsening to pneumonia and kidney failure - especially in those with underlying medical conditions.

Advice
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.

Resources
WHO coronavirus knowledge base