As of Oct. 27, authorities in Burkina Faso continue to maintain longstanding measures introduced to curb the spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19).
All land borders remain closed; however, essential cargo transport continues but will likely be subject to delays. International commercial air travel resumed from Thomas Sankara International Airport (OUA) and Bobo Dioulasso Airport (BOY) Aug. 1. All travelers arriving in Burkina Faso must present a negative COVID-19 test certificate taken up to five days before arrival. Travelers without a test certificate will require testing at the port of entry, and face up to a 14-day quarantine at home or in a hotel of choice if positive. Authorities will also perform temperature checks at the airport. Travelers departing the country will also have to present a negative COVID-19 test taken up to five days before travel. The status of land borders is currently unclear; however, essential cargo transport continues but will likely be subject to delays.
Domestic air services resumed in Burkina Faso July 24, with Air Burkina (2J) running at least two flights a day between OUA and BOY. The resumption of domestic and international flights follows the expiration of a nationwide 2100-0400 health curfew June 3. The wearing of facemasks in public remains mandatory nationwide, and all security-related curfews in areas under a state of emergency will continue. Affected areas include the Est, Sahel, Boucle de Mouhoun, Nord, Haut-Bassins, and the Centre-Est regions. Amendments and updates to the restrictions are possible in the coming days.
Background and Analysis
The measures currently in place follow a gradual easing of restrictions in recent months. Cases of COVID-19 continue to be reported in Burkina Faso. 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. On March 11, the WHO declared the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak a pandemic.
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.
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.