Macau is just now beginning to feel a little less pressure from the coronavirus. After putting the city on lockdown for a couple of weeks, drastically damaging the chances for a strong 2020 economic year, Macau reportedly is now coronavirus free. It sent its last quarantined patient to China, her country of origin, and the gambling city wants to make sure there’s no relapse. Anyone traveling from specified countries to the city must be put in a temporary quarantine, and this list just got a little longer.
With the return of the Chinese patient, Macau is breathing a sigh of relief. Lei Chin Ion, the city’s Health Bureau director, said in a statement, “We achieved the goal of having no severe cases, no deaths and no infections in [hospitals]. We appreciate all the efforts of our front line personnel and the support from all departments.”
To keep things safe and to allow the recovery process to begin, anyone traveling to Macau from Iran, Italy and South Korea must undergo an eight-hour quarantine period. These three countries were already on the restricted list, but they are now being joined by France, Germany, Japan and Spain. Ion adds, “We assume the situation in Europe will become worse and worse, and we might include all of Europe on the high-risk areas list in coming days.”
Macau isn’t the only place to take additional precautions. Japan has restrictions on all arrivals to the country from Macau, Hong Kong, mainland China and South Korea, but has extended its quarantine period. As of today, those arrivals are looking at a 14-day quarantine, which is in effect for both Japanese passport holders and visitors. The difference with Japan’s requirement is that it allows those affected individuals to remain at home or in their hotel rooms, as opposed to being remanded to a health facility.
Thailand has set up a similar system to that of Japan. Anyone coming from China, Hong Kong, Iran, Italy, Macau and South Korea is looking at self-quarantine, and the country’s tourism bureau explains, “The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) would like to recommend travelers from these territories that if the travelers feel these measures will be inconvenient for travelling in Thailand, they may consider postponing travel to another period and await further advice from Thailand’s Ministry of Public Health regarding the health measures involved.”