Global COVID-19 Pandemic Notice

Warning - Level 3, Avoid Nonessential Travel
Alert - Level 2, Practice Enhanced Precautions
Watch - Level 1, Practice Usual Precautions

Warning - Level 3, Avoid Nonessential Travel—Widespread Ongoing Transmission

 

Key Points


  • Widespread ongoing transmission of a respiratory illness caused by the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) is occurring globally.
  • CDC recommends that travelers avoid all nonessential international travel.
  • Older adults and people of any age with serious chronic medical conditions are at increased risk for severe disease.
  • There may be limited access to adequate medical care in affected areas.
  • US residents may have difficulty returning to the United States.
  • Travelers should avoid contact with sick people and wash their hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.
  • All international travelers should stay home for 14 days after returning from travel, monitor their health, and practice social distancing.

What is the current situation?

CDC recommends that travelers avoid all nonessential international travel.

The Department of State advises U.S. citizens to avoid all international travel due to the global impact of COVID-19. In countries where commercial travel options remain available, U.S. citizens should arrange for immediate return to the United States, unless they are prepared to remain abroad for an indefinite length of time. For more information about possible travel restrictions, contact your destination's U.S. Embassy or Consulate or visit the Department of State website.

Widespread ongoing transmission of a respiratory illness caused by a novel (new) coronavirus (COVID-19) is occurring globally. During the COVID-19 pandemic you may be exposed to the virus while traveling—from sick persons at airports, or on airplanes, ships, trains, or buses. Some health care systems are becoming overwhelmed and there may be limited access to adequate medical care in affected areas. Many countries are implementing travel restrictions and mandatory quarantines, closing borders, and prohibiting non-citizens from entry with little advance notice. Airlines have cancelled many international flights and in-country travel may be unpredictable. If you choose to travel internationally, your travel plans may be severely disrupted, and you may have to remain outside the United States for an indefinite length of time.

Illness with COVID-19 has ranged from mild to severe. Signs and symptoms of infection include fever, cough, and trouble breathing. This new coronavirus has caused severe disease and death in patients who developed pneumonia. Risk factors for severe illness are not yet clear, although older adults and people of any age with serious chronic medical conditions are at higher risk for severe illness.

What can travelers do to protect themselves and others?

CDC recommends that travelers avoid all nonessential international travel. If you must travel:

  • Avoid contact with sick people.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.
    • It is especially important to clean hands after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after coughing, sneezing or blowing your nose.
  • Avoid traveling if you are sick.

If you travelled internationally in the last 14 days:

  • Stay home, monitor your health, and practice social distancing for 14 days after you return from travel. Social distancing means staying out of crowded places, avoiding group gatherings, and maintaining distance (approximately 6 feet or 2 meters) from others when possible.
  • Learn more about what to do if you are sick after travel.

Clinician Information

Healthcare providers should obtain a detailed travel history for patients with fever or acute respiratory symptoms. If a traveler is suspected to have COVID-19, see Information for Healthcare Professionals for information on evaluating, reporting, clinical care guidance, and infection control.

For additional information, please see:

 

This notice was originally posted March 27, 2020.