Romania closes schools nationwide from March 11-22 and suspends direct flights, buses, and trains to Northern Italy until late March.

Severity: Informational Alert

This alert began 09 Mar 2020 21:12 GMT and is scheduled to expire 31 Mar 2020 23:59 GMT.

  • Incident: Travel restrictions
  • Location(s): Nationwide (map)
  • Time Frame: Indefinite
  • Impact: Entry restrictions, health screenings, increased immigration wait times likely

Summary
Romanian authorities announced a nationwide closure of schools from March 11-22, and suspended flights to northern Italy and all heavily affected areas that the Italian government identified from March 9-23, and all direct buses and trains from March 10-31. Romanian citizens arriving from Italy, China, Iran, and South Korea will be requested to self-quarantine.

In addition, air carriers are requested to not allow non-Romanians that have a layover in Italy, China, Iran, and South Korea to board flights to the country. Foreign nationals that arrive from Italy, China, Iran, and South Korea will be allowed into Romania only if they enter quarantine or isolation.

Authorities have introduced a ban on events with more than 1,000 participants; events with fewer than 1,000 participants need to be approved by local authorities. Further measures and travel restrictions are likely in the coming weeks.

Background and Analysis
The WHO has declared the ongoing outbreak of the virus to be a global health emergency. COVID-19 originated in China's Wuhan City in Hubei Province and has since spread to several countries across the globe.

As of March 9, there are 15 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Romania. Most of the cases have been imported from Italy. COVID-19 has affected Italy the worst in the region, with 7,375 people infected and 366 people confirmed dead.

Advice
Follow all official immigration and health screening instructions and allow additional time for processing. Consider delaying travel if experiencing symptoms associated with COVID-19, as they may prompt increased scrutiny and delays.

Exercise basic health precautions, especially frequent handwashing with soap and water, or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water are unavailable. 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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