News Alerts

Authorities tighten restrictions August 4

Category: Health and Medical

Severity: 3 (Moderate)

Source: Drum Cussac

08/05/2020 (Gambia) - On Tuesday, August 4, Gambian authorities banned public gatherings and closed nonessential public places in a tightening of restrictions to combat the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19). Among those public places affected by the closures are dine-in restaurants, bars, pubs, nightclubs, music lounges, casinos, gambling parlours, and cinemas. Also included are gyms, swimming pools, group events at beaches, and sporting fields. Face masks have also been made compulsory in public spaces. These measures will be in effect until at least November 2.
The tightening of restrictions comes following a gradual easing of restrictions in recent weeks. Markets have been permitted to operate between 06:00 and 18:00 (local time), while religious establishments were allowed to reopen on June 6 and schools on June 8. Social distancing and other measures remain in place.
The Gambia's land and sea borders remain closed, with exceptions for freight and security personnel, and international flights remain suspended until at least August 31, with exceptions for cargo flights and other emergency flights. All passengers arriving in the Gambia are subject to a mandatory 14-day quarantine period in a government designated facility.
As of Wednesday, August 5, Gambian health authorities have confirmed 671 cases of COVID-19, with 14 associated deaths. Further international spread of the virus is anticipated over the near term.
Context
The first case of COVID-19 was reported on December 31 and the source of the outbreak has been linked to a wet market in Wuhan (Hubei province, China). Since then, human-to-human transmission of the virus has been confirmed.
Cases of the virus have been confirmed in numerous countries and territories worldwide. On March 11, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the global outbreak a pandemic. Virus-screening and quarantining measures are being implemented at airports worldwide, as well as extensive travel restrictions.
The most common symptoms of COVID-19 are fever, dry cough, and tiredness. Some patients may experience other symptoms such as body pains, nasal congestion, headache, conjunctivitis, sore throat, diarrhea, loss of taste or smell or a rash on skin or discoloration of fingers or toes. These symptoms (in most cases mild) appear gradually. Generally, most patients (around 80 percent) recover from the disease without being hospitalized.

Measures adopted by local authorities evolve quickly, and are usually effective immediately. Depending on the evolution of the outbreak in other countries, authorities are likely to modify, at very short notice, the list of countries whose travelers are subject to border control measures or entry restrictions upon their arrival to the territory in question. It is advised to postpone nonessential travel due to the risk that travelers may be refused entry or be subject to quarantine upon their arrival or during their stay.
To reduce the risk of transmission, travelers are advised to abide by the following measures:
* Frequently clean hands by applying an alcohol-based hand rub or washing with soap and water.
* When coughing and sneezing, cover mouth and nose with a flexed elbow or tissue; if used, throw the tissue away immediately and wash hands.
* If experiencing a fever, cough, difficulty breathing, or any other symptoms suggestive of respiratory illness, including pneumonia, call emergency services before going to the doctor or hospital to prevent the potential spread of the disease.

Copyright © 2020 Drum Cussac

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