Latin American countries take steps to reduce the spread of coronavirus and fight the pandemic

São Paulo, March 17, 2020 – Latin American countries are taking measures to contain the spread of the coronavirus (covid-19). THE closing borders and the isolation of travelers arriving from abroad are among some of the actions taken to combat the pandemic.  

Check below how the coronavirus situation is in Latin American countries. 

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Photo: Disclosure / EPA


Until this Monday (16) there were 56 registered cases of coronavirus in the country and two deaths. Last Sunday, March 16, President Alberto Fernández announced the suspension of classes in schools across the country until March 31. In addition, large events, shopping malls and national parks are also suspended

The country has also closed its borders to foreigners without the right of abode in the country. Also, the suspension of flights for 30 days from Europe, USA, South Korea, Japan, China and Iran was decreed. Finally, people arriving from countries where the virus has spread must be isolated for 14 days upon their return.  


There were three confirmed cases in Bolivia until this Monday (16). However, information circulates that there are more infected people. The government declared a national emergency and suspended all classes in the country until the end of March. In addition, access was banned for people arriving from China, Korea, Italy and Spain, in addition to the suspension of flights arriving and departing from Europe. 

Meetings and events that would have gathered more than a thousand people were cancelled. The government also announced that it will strengthen the control of people entering the country's borders. 


Colombia has, so far, at least 34 people infected. The president declared, like other Latin American countries, last Monday (16) the banning foreigners from entering the country. Colombians and residents will be able to enter, but they must stay in preventive isolation for 14 days in their homes. The authorities reinforced self-care and reported that they are making visits to the homes of isolated people.

Costa Rica

Costa Rica recorded, until last Sunday (15), 35 cases of coronavirus. Health authorities in the country ordered some measures to contain the disease, such as closing bars, casinos and nightclubs in the country. The government also declared that schools should be closed and urged people to avoid leaving their homes, especially the elderly or those with chronic illnesses. 


Cuba has confirmed four cases of people infected with coronavirus so far, three of them being Italian tourists who have visited the island. The government is reinforcing surveillance measures and checking the country for suspected other cases. So far, flights have not been suspended, but authorities are tightening surveillance for arriving tourists. from China, Italy, Iran, Japan and South Korea, the United States, France and Germany.


Chile has, so far, 155 confirmed cases of coronavirus. The country's president, Sebastián Piñera, announced this Monday (16) that the country will close its borders. As in other Latin American countries, as of next Wednesday (18), foreigners will no longer be able to visit Chile. However, citizens of the country who are abroad will be able to return normally, having to stay 14 days in quarantine. 


Ecuador was the first country in South America to declare border closures. The announcement was made last Friday (13th) and restricted the access of foreigners to the country since Sunday (15th). In addition, the country declared that, as of this Monday (16), it will also prohibit access to Ecuadorian citizens who are abroad. 

Some land points, such as northern Colombia and southern Peru, are open, but they have increased surveillance. The country also suspended classes and events with large concentrations of people.

El Salvador

So far there are no cases of coronavirus in El Salvador. Still, preemptively, President Nayib Bukele declared the closure of all borders for 21 days. In addition, about 2,000 troops will be guarding unofficial entry points. The country also banned gatherings of more than 200 people. For 21 days, schools will remain closed and Salvadorans and residents who enter the country must be quarantined for 30 days.


Guatemala has few cases of infected people. However, last Sunday (15), the first death from the virus in the country was recorded. According to The New York Times, on the morning of this Monday (16), President Alejandro Giammattei declared that the country will close its borders for the next two weeks. 


In Honduras, until Friday (13) there were three people infected with the coronavirus. However, there are still suspected cases awaiting further tests. So far, schools are closed, as are visits to prisons. The government also announced the restriction of entry into the country for travelers coming from China, Japan, South Korea, Iran, Italy, among others. Honduran citizens arriving from abroad must remain in quarantine for 14 days.


Until Saturday (the 14th) there were 41 confirmed cases of coronavirus in the country. The government announced the suspension of classes until April 20. In addition, events with large concentrations of people should be cancelled. Regarding flights, the country is carrying out a random screening of passengers, just like on cruises. People suspected of being infected must go into 14-day quarantine. 


So far, the country has 55 confirmed cases, in addition to one death. Panama has declared a national emergency and, as of this Tuesday (17), will only allow access to Panamanians and resident foreigners. The announcement was made by Juan Pino, Minister of Security, during a press conference on Monday (16). In addition, according to the local press, the government also ordered the closure of businesses in the country, with the exception of pharmacies and medical clinics. 


Until Saturday (14) Paraguay had registered 7 cases of people infected with coronavirus. The country has suspended classes at schools and universities, as well as events with large numbers of people. Among the measures adopted is also an action on the Ponte da Amizade, which connects Foz do Iguaçu, in Brazil, to Cidade do Leste. Until March 25, anyone crossing the bridge will be subjected to a temperature test. Flights to and from Europe were also cancelled. 


Until last Friday (13), Peru had confirmed 38 cases of coronavirus. Like other Latin American countries, he announced the closing your borders from 23:59 this Monday (16). In addition, classes throughout the territory were suspended, as well as events with a large concentration of people. In a statement, the country warned that tourists who are in the country must leave before that time or will have to spend 15 days inside the hotel. The closure of public spaces such as bars and restaurants will also take place for the next two weeks. 

Dominican Republic

In the Dominican Republic, 11 cases of covid-19 were recorded until last Saturday (14). For now, the measure was to suspend classes in public and private education networks until the 17th to disinfect spaces. 


Until this Monday (16) Uruguay recorded 4 cases of infected with the coronavirus. The country has decided to partially close its borders and flights to and from Europe are completely suspended – only Uruguayans or residents can enter the country. In addition, American Airlines flights to the US were also cancelled. 

At Carrasco airport, in Montevideo, the country's main airport, those who arrive fill out a form informing where they traveled and if they had any symptoms. Passengers arriving from countries considered at risk, such as China, South Korea, Iran, Singapore, Italy, France, Spain, among others, must undergo a mandatory quarantine. Classes have been suspended at all levels of public and private education for 14 days. 


Venezuela had, until last Sunday (15), with 17 confirmed cases of coronavirus. President Nicolás Maduro declared, this Monday (16), a collective quarantine in six states and also in the capital of the country, Caracas. He also called for Venezuelan citizens to remain in their homes and for businesses, with the exception of essential services, to close for the time being.

Read too:

» Argentina suspends visits to 11 national parks
» Coronavirus: Colombia bans foreigners from entering the country
» Disney closes parks due to coronavirus
» Coronavirus: Peru closes borders and evaluates quarantine across the country

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