Amref COVID-19 Africa Information Centre

Amref COVID-19 Africa Information Centre

Our Response

Amref Health Africa Supporting Ministries of Health in Africa in strengthening response to the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic in the African Continent

Amref Health Africa is working closely with African Ministries of Health, Africa CDC alongside the World Health Organisation in preventive measures to curb the spread of the COVID- 19 and especially by strengthening frontline health workers. In Kenya for example, we have partnered with the Ministry of Health and Africa CDC to improve surveillance, early detection and track the spread of the disease

COVID-19

Frequently Asked Questions about Coronavirus disease

Corona viruses are a large group of viruses many of which cause no or minor illnesses, like the common cold. Some cause illness in people, and others only infect animals. Usually these infections do not cross over from animals to people. 

 

On rare occasions, coronaviruses that infect animals “change” and develop the ability to infect people. This has occurred with Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) where the causative viruses were probably initially infections of bats. The new (novel) corona virus was probably also an infection of bats but is now able to infect people. The new (novel) corona virus is officially called Coronavirus Disease-2019 or COVID-19 (because it was first detected in 2019).

COVID-19 was first detected in Wuhan City, Hubei Province, China, linked to a live animal market. This virus is now able to infect humans and can spread from person to person:

 

  • Between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet)
  • Via respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes, and are inhaled into the lungs of a person nearby.
  • Possibly through touching an infected person who has touched their own mouth and nose which are spread when a person with COVID-19 coughs or exhales.

 

People are thought to be most contagious when they have symptoms and are sick. There is also evidence that spread might be possible when people are infected but before they become sick, but this is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads.

Symptoms include:

 

  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath

 

The symptoms may appear from 2−14 days (incubation period) after contact with an infected person and may range from mild to severe illness.

Testing is performed on a blood sample in specialised laboratories.  Currently, testing can be done in 16 laboratories in Africa including in Kenya, Uganda, Ethiopia and Zambia. Soon, more laboratories in Africa will be able to test for the virus including in South Sudan, Malawi, Tanzania and Mozambique.

 

A negative test result for a person with these symptoms means that the COVID-19 virus is not causing their current illness. There are no approved simple rapid tests for COVID-19 infection at present.

There are no specific drugs to treat COVID-19 infection. People who are sick should receive supportive care to help relieve symptoms. For severe cases, treatment should include care to support vital organ functions.

Fourteen (14) percent of confirmed cases are severe, with serious pneumonia and shortness of breath. Another 5% of patients develop respiratory failure and critical illness. About 2.3% of confirmed cases have resulted in death. 

 

Therefore, the vast majority of confirmed cases have mild infection, with cold-like symptoms and mild pneumonia. It is not known why some people suffer more from the virus than others, but those who have developed serious illness tend to be those with underlying disease, such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, chronic respiratory disease, hypertension or cancer.

There is currently no vaccine to prevent COVID-19 infection. The only way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to the virus. Everyday preventive actions include:

 

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Stay at home if you are sick.
  • Cover your nose and mouth with disposable tissue when coughing or sneezing, and then properly dispose of the tissue.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom, before eating, and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
  • Alternatively, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Always wash hands first with soap and water if hands are visibly dirty.
  • Reduce handshaking (within cultural acceptability).

 

These precautions also apply to people travelling to other parts of their own country, or other countries.

Only wear a mask if you have symptoms of COVID-19 infection (coughing or sneezing) or are looking after someone who may have COVID-19, to help prevent the spread of the disease to others.

 

Disposable face masks can only be used once.

 

Remove the mask from behind (do not touch the front of mask) and discard it immediately in a closed bin. Remember to wash your hands with an alcohol-based sanitizer or soap and water.

Quarantine means separating a person or group of people who have been exposed to a contagious disease but have not become sick. This is to prevent the possible spread of the disease.

 

The duration of quarantine is usually for the incubation period of the disease, that is, the time from contact with the infection to developing the sickness. For COVID-19, the period of quarantine is 14 days. Someone who has been released from COVID-19 quarantine is not considered at risk for spreading the virus to others.

People can fight stigma and help, not hurt, others by providing social support. Counter stigma by learning and sharing facts. Communicating the facts that viruses do not target specific racial or ethnic groups, and how COVID-19 actually spreads, can help to stop stigma.

Paper bills can contain bacteria and viruses that can lead to the spread of disease. Wash your hands carefully after handling money. Better yet, use the various mobile and online banking solutions available to you.

 

And just as is the case with other activities, remember to wash your hands with soap and water or use an alcohol-based sanitizer after bank transactions.

Various countries have put in place different measures for members of the public who develop the symptoms of the disease and those seeking further information.

COVID-19

Awareness
Information
Pack

How 2019 Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) Spreads
Symptoms of 2019 Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19)
Simple Ways of reducing the spread of Coronavirus
Simple Ways of reducing the spread of Coronavirus
Simple Ways of reducing the spread of Coronavirus

Steps we are taking

Supporting public health authorities

Leveraging the innovative mobile technology – Leap, Amref and the Ministry of Health in Kenya are launching a two-month campaign to educate health workers on COVID-19. This will enable health care workers to educate communities on the virus and relevant prevention measures. Using this mobile learning platform, health workers will also be trained to identify, isolate and refer suspected cases as well as maintain safety standards at points of entry or high-risk areas to prevent possible transmission.

 

The approach entails joint development and customisation of digital training content that will be deployed to health workers through their mobile devices (basic and/or smartphones). The digital content has been customized to fit the needs of target audiences which includes consideration of skilled level of the audience, language preference and preferred channels (text or audio messages).

 

In Uganda, Tanzania and Ethiopia, Amref is part of their respective national taskforces to assist the ministries of health to prepare emergency responses. Further, in Tanzania, through the Amref CDC-funded community-based disease surveillance project, we have been involved at ministerial level in developing a national pandemic influenza preparedness and response plan, whose approaches are applicable for coronavirus control as well as other international health emergencies. We are also involved at the community level creating awareness and reporting using Event-Based Surveillance (EBS) tools.

 

With our in deep knowledge of health services, our close involvement with communities, and our wide network throughout sub-Saharan Africa, Amref Health Africa is already :

 

→ supporting national governments and institutes to organize preventive measures and mount responses, as needed;
→ providing training on infection, prevention and control measures to health workers;
→ disseminating educational materials to keep communities informed;
→ providing regular updates to healthcare workers;
→ advising and facilitating the transport of specimens to national testing laboratories.
→ Advising on workplace preparedness

 

The World Health Organization (WHO)Africa CDC and partners are scaling up preparedness efforts for COVID-19 in the African region to implement the recommendations of the International Health Regulations Emergency Committee.

 

Amref Health Africa has consistently supported Ministries of Health and WHO during outbreak interventions including facilitating the provision of critical healthcare to remote communities across Africa as evidenced by participation during roll out of control measures during the Ebola outbreaks in Uganda 2000 and 2012, and in Senegal and Guinea in 2014, the cholera outbreak in Kenya (2017) and the Lassa fever outbreak in Nigeria (2018).

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Emergency Hotline Numbers

Travel Restrictions and National Guidelines

  • The Algerian government has started to ease the measures it had undertaken to limit the spread of COVID-19 by allowing more businesses to reopen and public transportation in cities to resume, but the lifting of restrictions will be gradual and dependent on the evolution of COVID-19 cases in Algeria.  
  • People are required to wear a protective mask when in public.  All land borders remain closed and the suspension of non-cargo domestic and international air and maritime travel remains in place.  The Governor of Algiers prohibited all public transportation on Fridays and Saturdays until further notice. 
  • A curfew is in effect in 29 of Algeria’s 48 provinces, including in Algiers, where the curfew is from 8pm to 5am.  The other provinces covered by the curfew are:  Boumerdes, Souk Ahras, Tissemsilt, Djelfa, Mascara, Oum El Bouaghi, Batna, Bouira, Relizane, Biskra, Khenchela, M’sila, Chlef, Sidi Bel Abbes, Médéa, Blida, Bordj Bou Arreridj, Tipaza, Ouargla, Bechar, Constantine, Oran, Sétif, Annaba, Bejaia, Adrar, Laghouat, El Oued. Curfews are constantly being reviewed and revised.
  • Algeria closed all land borders and suspended non-cargo international air and maritime travel as of March 17 and suspended domestic flights as of March 22.

Source:  US Embassy in Algeria

  • The Government of Angola cancelled all international flights effective March 20, 2020, and Angola remains closed to commercial flights. 
  • Land borders remain closed for all but commercial transport, and the areas within the quarantine districts (Luanda Province and the municipality of Cazengo, in the Province of Cuanza Norte) are closed to overland personal travel or domestic passenger flights through August 9, 2020.
  • Anyone arriving in Angola must present proof of a negative RT-PCR COVID-19 test; passengers may take the test up to 72 hours prior to travel and may be given credit for those days toward the mandatory 14-day quarantine. 

Source: US Embassy Angola 

BENIN

 

  • Travel within the country should be limited to essential travel only. Capacity on public transport is limited to 50%.
  • The Government of Benin is conducting mandatory COVID-19 testing of all airline passengers arriving in Benin.  Tests are at passenger expense. Travelers may be ordered to self-quarantine while awaiting the test results, and those who test positive for COVID-19 may be subject to government-mandated isolation measures.  
  • Gatherings of over 50 people are prohibited. Restrictions on bars, restaurants and entertainment spots have been lifted.
  • Visits to public institutions, including government buildings, have been limited. Additional measures include the requirement to wear face masks in public spaces and a systematic sanctioning of those people found to have breached restriction and confinement measures imposed on them.
  • Schools and other educational establishments have been reopened.

Source: GOV.UK

BOTSWANA

  • The Government of Botswana announced a new lockdown in the Gaborone COVID-19 zone starting July 31, 2020 for a minimum of two weeks.
  • Only essential services will remain operational at a reduced amount, and movement permits will be required for all movement within the Greater Gaborone Zone.
  • Inter-zone permits for travel between zones are still required in the rest of the country, and travel into and out of the Greater Gaborone Zone is prohibited.
  • There are still no commercial international flights into or out of Botswana.

Source: US Embassy in Botswana 

BURKINA FASO 

  • The Government of Burkina Faso announced the Ouagadougou airport will return to normal operations on 1st August 2020. 
  • All land borders remain closed. 

Source: US Embassy in Burkina Faso 

  • Commercial flights to and from Burundi remain very limited.
  • Land borders are closed but will reopen from 1 August.

Source: GOV.UK

CAMEROON 

  • The Cameroonian Prime Minister announced that as of March 18 all land, sea, and air borders are closed until further announcement due to COVID-19. Recently, some airlines have been given permission to fly in and out the country.
  • Air passengers who enter the country will have to undergo a rapid test for COVID-19 at the airport. If positive, they will be required to be in isolation at home or in a government facility at their own expense depending on their symptoms. If negative, they are required to self-quarantine at home for 14 days.
  • Passenger screening forms and temperature checks have been implemented at points of entry. There are temporary isolation booths for symptomatic passengers at Nsimalen International Airport in Yaoundé.
  • Isolation and treatment centres have been set up at Yaoundé Central Hospital, Laquintinie Hospital in Douala, Garoua Regional Hospital, and Kribi District Hospital for people who meet the case definition for COVID-19.

Source: US Embassy in Cameroon. 

CHAD

  • As of March 18, 2020, all international passenger flights are suspended.
  • Upon entry to Chad, travelers are checked for fever and, if symptomatic, may be transmitted to a hospital for further evaluation.  Travelers without symptoms are required to quarantine for 14 days after arrival.
  • The Government of Chad announced that the N’Djamena Airport will reopen effective August 1, 2020.

Source: US Embassy in Chad 

  • All international flights are suspended until further notice. Ports are closed to traffic from affected countries.
  • From 25 April, a daily curfew is in place from 8pm to 5am.
  • The number of passengers on public transport is limited (10 in buses, 4 in taxis). You must wear a face-mask in all public places, including markets, banks and shops and on public transport.

Source: GOV.UK

  • The suspension of international passenger flights remains in effect, and Congolese borders remain closed. 
  • Domestic passenger flights and road traffic may resume nationwide.
  • The Government is planning to re-open the borders on Aug 20 if adequate health measures are in place by that time.
  • Effective July 28, the curfew will regress from 22:00 to 20:00 until 05:00 in Brazzaville and Pointe-Noire.

Source: US Embassy in Congo

  • A State of Emergency remains in effect through August 31.
  • International flights were permitted to resume effective July 1.  Airlines are offering limited commercial flight services.
  • The Government of Cote d’Ivoire closed land, aviation and maritime borders on March 22.  Land and maritime borders remain closed through August 31, while air travel is now authorized.  Cargo shipments are not affected.
  • Primary and secondary schools as well as universities are permitted to be open.
  • Restaurants and marquis in the Greater Abidjan area re-opened on May 15, but are expected to follow social distancing and hygiene guidelines.  Bars, night clubs, cinemas and entertainment venues were also permitted to re-open as of July 31.
  • Travel from the Greater Abidjan area (defined to include Dabou, Azagule, Bingerville, Grand-Bassam, Bonoua and Assinie) to and from the rest of the country was permitted to resume on July 15.
  • Face masks/cloth face coverings remain mandatory in public in the greater Abidjan area, including in vehicles.
  • Vulnerable populations, including the elderly, pregnant women, and those with chronic health conditions, should remain at home.  Social distancing remains in effect:  no handshakes or embraces, maintain at least one-meter distance from other persons.  Non-essential movements are discouraged.

Source: US Embassy in Cote D’Ivoire 

  • On July 17, 2020, Djibouti’s Ambouli International Airport opened for incoming and outgoing passenger traffic.  Air Djibouti, Air France, Ethiopian Airlines, Qatar Airways and Turkish Airlines have all resumed flights in and out of Djibouti.
  • Passenger service on the Djibouti-Addis Ababa railroad remains suspended.
  • Restaurants are currently open, while nightclubs, bars and movie theatres are scheduled to reopen on September 1st.
  • On 16 July, the Ministry of Health issued a circular note on the reopening of borders, specifying the health protocols for passengers.  Travelers coming to Djibouti by air/sea/land must be screened for COVID-19 upon arrival at ports of entry.  In addition, travellers coming to Djibouti must be equipped with protective masks at the time of departure or arrival at the points of entry, respect the physical distance of one meter, if possible, at all stages of the journey and carry a hydro-alcoholic gel throughout the trip.

Source: US Embassy in Djibouti

  • Starting on Saturday June 27, the nightly curfew will end.
  • Restaurants, cafes, sports clubs and movie theatres will be allowed to open at 25 percent capacity.
  • Restaurants and cafes will be required to close by 10:00 p.m., while other shops will be required to close by 9:00 p.m.
  • Places of worship will be allowed to reopen for daily prayers from Sunday to Thursday.  Places of worship will remain closed on Friday and Saturday.
  • Public parks and beaches remain closed.

Source: US Embassy in Egypt

  • The Government has closed sea and air borders in response to Coronavirus and has only partly reopened them, to nationals, residents, diplomats and professionals.

Source: GOV.UK

  • The Government of Eritrea announced the closure of Asmara International Airport effective at 12:00 a.m. March 26.  Land borders are also closed.

Source: US Embassy in Eritrea 

  • All passengers arriving at Bole International airport must have a medical certificate with a negative COVID-19 RT PCR test issued at most 72 hours before arrival starting from the time sample is given. Passengers are subject to a 14-days mandatory self-quarantine at their home and also required to give sample upon arrival.
  • Passengers without negative COVID-19 RT-PCR certificate are subject to medical screening and quarantine for 14 days. The first seven (7) days at Government-designated facility at their own expense and the remaining seven (7) days at their home self-isolated
  • The above quarantine requirement does not apply for transit passengers.

 

Source: US Embassy in Ethiopia 

On September 28th 2020, the President of the Republic of Kenya, Uhuru Kenyatta directed as follows:

  • THAT the Nationwide Curfew in force throughout the territory of the Republic of Kenya is extended for a further sixty (60) days.
  • THAT the commencement time for the Nationwide Curfew is varied from 9:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m. Therefore, effective tomorrow, Tuesday the 29th September, 2020 the national wide dusk-to dawn curfew will run from 11:00 O’clock in the night to 4:00 O’clock in the morning.
  • THAT the prohibition against the operation of bars and the prohibition against the sale of alcoholic drinks and beverages by ordinary restaurants and eateries shall stand vacated with effect from 29th September, 2020;
  • THAT the closing time for all bars, restaurants and eateries shall be 10pm every day with effect from 29th September, 2020 and their operations shall be with strict adherence to all applicable guidelines and protocols issued by the Ministry of Health;
  • THAT in line with the recommendations of the Inter-Faith Council, the permitted maximum size of religious gatherings is increased to one third (1/3) of its normal sitting capacity; but with strict adherence to all applicable guidelines and protocols issued by the Ministry of Health; and
  • THAT the permitted maximum number of persons attending funerals and weddings is reviewed upwards from one hundred (100) to two hundred (200); but with strict adherence to all applicable guidelines and protocols issued by the Ministry of Health.
  • Domestic air travel resumed on July 15th under Ministry of Health and Transport guidelines. International flights resumed on August 1st.
  • According to a July 7 announcement by Cabinet Secretary for Education, Prof George Magoha, basic educational institutions will reopen January 2021. University and colleges may open in September 2020 after meeting strict COVID-19 regulations.
  • Any movement by public transport vehicles into and out of these areas requires transport providers to first acquire mandatory certification from the Ministry of Health, in consultation with the Ministry of Transport.

 

Source: US Embassy in Kenya and Republic of Kenya

  • International commercial passenger flights have resumed in Gabon.  
  • The following restrictions are now in place at the Léon Mba Libreville International Airport:
  • The airport hall will only be open to passengers who are traveling and authorized airport personnel.
  • Passengers must wear a mask.
  • Passengers will not be permitted to exit the airport after check-in.
  • Due to new health measures, the amount of time required for check-in is expected to increase. Passengers are advised to be at the airport at least three hours before takeoff.

COVID-19 Testing and Quarantine Requirements 

  • Departing Passengers: Proof of a negative result on a COVID-19 test is not required for passengers departing on international flights unless required by the country of destination. 
  • Arriving Passengers:  Proof of a negative result on an RT-PCR test taken within five days of departure is required for passengers entering Gabon.  Entering passengers may also be required to submit to health screening mea https://ga.usembassy.gov/health-alert-u-s-embassy-libreville-gabon-july-11-2020/ sures, including an RT-PCR test, upon arrival.  Please note that the U.S. Embassy in Libreville does not offer COVID-19 testing services.  For recommendations on testing sites in Gabon, please contact Gabon’s COVID-19 hotline (1410).  A listing of testing sites in Libreville can be found on the Gabonese government’s COVID-19 website
  • Passengers entering the country are required to self-isolate in their place of residence for 14 days from the date of their arrival.  Self-isolation may take place in a city other than Libreville if Libreville is not where the passenger resides or will be staying. 

Source: US Embassy in Gabon 

  • Gambian airspace and land borders remain closed, as of March 23, 2020.
  • Under the current State of Emergency, entry and exit of persons into The Gambia is suspended, except for diplomats, drivers of essential commodities, and persons seeking urgent medical attention abroad.
  • Flights into The Gambia may be permitted only to transport Gambians returning to The Gambia, diplomats, and humanitarian workers.
  • Any passenger,  as noted above,  seeking entry to The Gambia must be in possession of a valid certificate from point of departure indicating a negative COVID-19 test at least 72 hours before boarding.
  • All arrivals – either by air or overland – regardless of nationality, with travel in or through any country with cases of COVID-19 will be subject to 14-day mandatory quarantine in government of The Gambia managed facilities.
  • Those held at quarantine facilities are being provided with basic shelter, food, water, and medical care at the expense of the Government of The Gambia.

Source: US Embassy in the Gambia 

  • Ghana’s international land, air, and sea borders have been closed to human traffic since March 21. On May 31, President Akufo-Addo announced that the border closure will be in effect “until further notice.”  Regular international commercial flights in or out of Ghana are not currently available.
  • There are no current internal movement restrictions in Ghana.
  • On April 25, The Ministry of Health released guidance mandating the use of facemasks in public. This directive is still in effect and enforced by the police.
  • On May 31, President Akufo-Addo outlined a phased easing of the restrictions on some public gatherings to occur over the month of June:
    • Beginning June 5, restaurants may reopen with appropriate social distancing precautions, and conferences, workshops, and weddings, and private burials are permitted with a maximum attendance of 100 persons.
    • Junior and senior high schools and universities will reopen for final year students on a phased schedule starting June 15. Final year university students are to report to their universities on June 15.  Final year senior high school (SHS 3) students and SHS 2 Gold Track students must report on June 22, and final year junior high school (JHS 3) students must report on June 29.
  • On July 26, President Akufo-Addo announced further easing of the restriction on public gatherings: 
  • Domestic airplanes, taxis, and buses are now permitted to operate at full capacity.
  • Large sporting events, political rallies, and festivals are suspended until further notice. Nightclubs, bars, beaches, and cinemas must also remain closed until further notice.
  • Open-air drinking establishments and Ghana’s national tourists’ sites/attractions are permitted to reopen.
  • Beginning August 1, religious services may operate at full capacity for up to two hours per service. Face coverings and one meter social distancing is required.

Source: US Embassy in Ghana

  • Enhanced screening and quarantine measures to reduce the spread of COVID-19.
  • Travelers should be prepared for additional travel restrictions to be put into effect with little or no advance notice. Travelers arriving at Moshoeshoe International Airport with no fever (body temperature under 37.5 degrees Celsius/99.5 degrees Fahrenheit) from countries affected by COVID-19 (including the United States) may be instructed by the government of Lesotho to self-isolate for 14 days. Travelers arriving at the airport with a fever and other respiratory signs and symptoms may be transported to an isolation facility for quarantine. Similar protocols may be applied at land border crossings.

 

Source: US Embassy in Lesotho

  • Travel ban from countries with 200+ cases.
  • Many airlines have reduced or suspended their flights to Liberia.
  • Quarantine in precautionary observation centres for people who have been in affected countries (200+ cases) in the previous 14 days.

Source: The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade

  • Libya’s UN-recognised Government of National Accord (GNA) in Tripoli suspended all flights at the Misrata Airport for three weeks. Border closures have also been closed.
  • Libya closed schools for two weeks and airports, seaports and border crossing for three weeks.

Source: Aljazeera, Bloomberg

  • On August 9, the Government of Madagascar amended the restrictions to reflect the following:
    • People may work until 5pm. Employers should provide transportation.
    • All civil servants will return to work starting Monday, August 10.
    • Markets can open from 6:00 am to 5:00 pm.
    • Face covering is mandatory; those who do not comply with will face sanctions.
    • Circulation of the general public is limited to one person per household unless there is a specific reason to go out.
    • No urban or suburban public transportation (taxi-be and taxi- brousses)
    • Taxis can continue to operate with 3 passengers.
    • A motorcycle can have two people.
    • Trucks transporting goods may circulate.
    • Restaurants are allowed to function with a maximum of 50 persons.
    • Gatherings of more than 50 persons are still prohibited.
    • Schools remain closed. Examination dates are maintained.
    • Sports and cultural events are still suspended.
    • Funeral procession into and out of Analamanga is prohibited.
    • Curfew applies from 9:00pm to 4:00 am.
    • Internal and commercial flights are still suspended.

 Source: US Embassy of Madagascar

  • AII arriving passengers into the Republic of Malawi shall be required to produce a negative SARS Cov-2 PCR test certificate obtained within 10 days prior to arrival in Malawi. Any passenger without the said certificate will be denied entry. All arriving passengers will be required to proceed on self-quarantine for l4 days during the time they will be followed up by Health Authorities.
  • Arriving passengers may be required to provide samples for Covid-I9 testing. Samples will be collected at the airport and test results will be communicated to the concerned within 48 hours.
  • Any symptomatic passengers will be handled according to specific guidelines laid down by the Health Authorities.
  • All arriving passengers shall fill out and submit Travel Surveillance Forms (TSF) which shall be made available on-board aircraft or in the airport terminal building. The forms shall be handed over to health personnel in the terminal building.

 

Source:  US Embassy of Malawi

  • The Government of Mali has implemented the following measures to limit the spread of COVID-19:
    • Sporting events, festivals, and gatherings larger than 50 people have been banned, and bars and nightclubs have also been closed.
    • Vehicle occupancy has been restricted to promote social distancing.
    • Schools and universities have allowed students with mandatory exams to return, but schools remain closed to most students.
    • The work schedule for all government offices (except for defense, security, and health) has been reduced to 7:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Monday through Friday.
    • The General Directorate for Commerce and Competition set price limits for essential goods, including sugar, rice, cooking oil, and bread.
    • The Government of Mali conducts COVID-19 tests on all persons who enter Mali, and all new arrivals are subject to a 14-day quarantine.
  • On March 20, the Government of Mali prohibited flights coming from countries with confirmed cases of COVID-19. The Government of Mali has announced that the Airport will remain closed to commercial air traffic through July 31, 2020. Additionally, the Malian government has closed all land borders to passenger vehicle traffic while allowing cargo and freight.

Source: US Embassy in Mali

The Moroccan government eased some measures from midnight 19 July (local restrictions may be applied by local authorities in cities/prefectures/provinces). Provinces/prefectures in Morocco have been categorised into two zones according to their pandemic situation. The wearing of face masks in public spaces remains mandatory.

At national level

  • Cafes and restaurants permitted to serve on site, as long as they do not exceed 50% capacity.
  • Resumption of commercial activities in shopping centres, and malls.
  • Resumption of public transport (road and rail) between cities (75% capacity).
  • Resumption of domestic flights.
  • Opening of gyms, hammams, hair and beauty salons (50% capacity).
  • Ending of requirement for all commercial activities to finish at 8pm.
  • Resumption of tourist facilities at 100% capacity, with the exception of common areas within hotels such as pools, restaurants and fitness facilities which should remain at 50% capacity.
  • Gatherings, meetings and events of up to 20 persons are now permitted.
  • Opening of cultural centres, museums, libraries and historic sites (50% capacity)

Zone 1

  • Freedom of movement between regions in Zone 1 (ID is required).
  • Reopening of beaches, provided that social distancing measures are respected (1 metre)
  • Reopening of outdoor sports grounds, public parks and public spaces
  • Opening of domestic tourist establishments e.g. hotels (50% capacity)

Zone 2

  • Travel/movement within the province or the prefecture without the need for a movement authorisation form
  • Requirement of a movement authorisation form from the local authorities in order to leave your province or prefecture
  • Reopening of outdoor parks and public spaces
  • Individual outdoor sports (such as walking, running, cycling) permitted
  • No visas (including border visas) are being issued at this time.
  • The Ministry of Health (MISAU) has implemented screening at airports and other points of entry scanning the temperatures of all travellers.
  • All arrivals to Mozambique, regardless of citizenship, will be on a mandated 14-day self-quarantine (see quarantine information below).
  • The Mozambican Government has mandated a 14-day self-quarantine for the following:
    • All arrivals, regardless of citizenship or prior travel; and
    • All persons who have had direct contact with confirmed cases of COVID-19.

Source: US Embassy in Mozambique

  • Except for the Erongo region, the whole of Namibia adopted stage 4 restrictions from midnight on 29 June. These restrictions were revised on 3 August and are expected to last until 17 September.
  • Revised stage 4 measures include:
    • Continued physical distancing of at least 1 metre between persons;
    • A requirement for face masks to be worn at all times in public spaces;
    • Avoiding unnecessary travel to and from different parts of the country;
    • Increased hygiene interventions, including installation of sanitiser equipment within public and work places;
    • A requirement for businesses to keep a register of customers, recording time of patronage, full name and contact details, to assist with possible contact tracing;
    • Public gatherings limited to 100 persons;
    • Contact sports are permitted but no spectators allowed;
    • Sale of alcohol remains on a takeaway basis for consumption in private dwellings, shebeens and bars; alcohol may be consumed in restaurants and bars;
    • Borders remaining closed and international flights suspended.
  • For the Erongo region, stage 3 measures have been extended to last until 31 August. Measures are as follows:
  • All members of the public are required to wear face masks in public spaces and to observe public distancing;
  • Restaurants are open to pre-booked customers; bars and liquor outlets may sell alcohol for home consumption only; cinemas, libraries, gyms and sporting events will be subject to limits on customer numbers; contact sports, nightclubs and casinos remain closed;
  • Travel between towns in the Erongo region and the rest of the country will be permitted, with the exception of Walvis Bay, Swakopmund and Arandis local authority areas; travel into and out of these areas is highly discouraged and will be restricted to emergency situations only;
  • Public gatherings in the Erongo region will be restricted to 50 persons, except for Walvis Bay, Swakopmund and Arandis where gatherings are restricted to 10 persons.

Source: GOV.UK

  • As of May 25, the ban on gatherings of at least 50 people, including workshops, seminars, and social ceremonies was lifted.
  • As of May 25, Niger reinstated regular work hours (8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Friday).
  • As of May 15, the city of Niamey is no longer under a health confinement.
  • As of May 13, places of worship including mosques and churches have re-opened, provided proper social distancing and hygiene measures are followed.
  • As of May 13, the curfew that was in effect from 9 p.m. to 5 a.m. has been lifted.
  • All public schools re-opened on June 1 after being closed since March 20.
  • Restaurants, markets, stores, and public and private services must institute obligatory hygiene measures.
  • It is mandatory to wear a face mask or other objects that cover the mouth and nose in Niamey in public places, markets, and urban transport.
  • People must respect a distance of at least one meter between people in open spaces, restaurants, businesses, airports, and other public places.
  • Commercial international flights into Niger’s international airports resumed on August 1. 
  • Travelers arriving at international airports will have their temperature taken and should present a negative COVID-19 test certificate that is dated within the previous 72 hours.  A rapid COVID-19 test and a nasal swab will be taken from passengers upon arrival and passengers will be encouraged to self quarantine at a precise address.  People arriving without a test result will be required to pay the costs of the COVID-19 test.  All people testing positive for COVID-19 at the airports will be led automatically to a governmental quarantine site.  Passengers’ will be disinfected.
  • For flights departing Niger’s international airports, passengers must present a negative COVID-19 test certificate dated within 72 hours of the flight. 
  • Land borders have been closed since March 19, except for merchandise and passengers with special permission.
  • All travelers entering Niger from countries suffering from the COVID-19 must self-quarantine in their homes or in another adequate location for a period of 14 days.

Source: US Embassy in Niger

  • There is a nation-wide curfew since June 2 from 10 P.M. to 4 A.M. every day
  • As of March 23, the Federal Government of Nigeria has suspended all international and domestic commercial air flights into and within Nigeria. 
  • On July 1, the Ministry of Aviation announced a staggered restart of domestic flights according to the following schedule: 
  • July 8:   Abuja – Lagos
  • July 11: Kano, Maiduguri, Owerri, Port Harcourt
  • July 15: other airports

Source: US Embassy & Consulate in Nigeria

  • Movements are prohibited from 9:00 PM to 5:00 AM, except with permission.
  • Masks must be worn in public at all times.
  • Domestic and international tourism is permitted only for visitors traveling on charter flights.  The Kigali Airport remains closed to normal commercial air traffic.
  • Individual sporting activities in open spaces are permitted, but sports facilities, gyms, and recreational centres remain closed.
  • Religious weddings and funerals are permitted but must not exceed 30 people.
  • All bars, schools, universities, and places of worship remain closed.
  • Transport between provinces in permitted, except to and from Rusizi and Rubavu districts.
  • Meetings in public spaces and mass gatherings are prohibited.
  • Borders remain closed, except for cargo, goods, and returning Rwandans and Rwandan permanent residents. 
  • Rwandan citizens and residents returning to the country are subject to a mandatory seven day quarantine at designated locations at their own expense.

Source: US Embassy in Rwanda

  • On September 16, the Government of Senegal announced that public transportation services (taxis, care rapides and intercity buses) are permitted to transport the maximum number of passengers, provided all passengers wear a mask.  The Government has separately authorized the reopening of cultural spaces accommodating up to 500 people.
  • The Government of Senegal continues to enforce other existing measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19, including: the closure of public beaches; a prohibition on all demonstrations on public highways; and mandatory use of facial coverings. Violators may be subject to fines and potentially one month of jail time.
  • The Government of Senegal has also implemented restrictions that impact entry into Senegal for certain foreign nationals. Travelers who are not citizens or residents of Senegal or a country that is a member of the Economic Community of West African States, or who do not meet certain other exemptions outlined here, may be denied entry or face difficulty traveling to Senegal.
  • All travellers to Senegal over the age of two years must present an original COVID-19 test certificate showing a negative result.  The test must occur within seven days of entry into Senegal and be issued by a laboratory approved for such testing or a recognized international health organization.  Travelers transiting Senegal must also show such proof if they will be present in Senegal more than 24 hours or wish to exit the airport.
  • If unable to obtain a COVID-19 test, travellers to Senegal must submit a statement that they have no symptoms associated with COVID-19 and have not been in contact with a COVID-19 patient. Such travellers will be required to undergo a risk assessment by airport health officials and will be required to undergo a COVID-19 test at the airport if deemed necessary by health officials. Costs of any screening or tests are the responsibility of the traveller.
  • Travelers who test positive or with obvious COVID-19 symptoms must complete an additional medical form provided by airport health service personnel and may be subject to additional requirements, including quarantine, as determined by health officials.
  • All travellers to Senegal will be required to complete a passenger location form for public health officials, in accordance with recommendations from the International Civil Aviation Organization.  The form will be collected on arrival. The form is available for preview and download here.
  • Travelers who test positive for COVID-19 on arrival, or with obvious COVID-19 symptoms, may be subject to additional requirements, including quarantine, as determined by local health officials.

 

Source: US Embassy in Senegal

  • From 1 August, only visitors who travel from countries deemed to be a low or medium COVID-19 risk will be permitted entry to Seychelles.
  • If you are eligible for entry to Seychelles, you must provide proof of a negative COVID-19 test performed within the 48 hours prior to boarding your flight. From 1 August, this will change to 72 hours prior to boarding your flight.
  • Cruise ships from any country worldwide will not be permitted to berth in Seychelles until further notice.
  • Seychelles International Airport may allow private jets and commercial charter flights to land if they are carrying passengers who will then be transferred to authorised yachts, or to specifically authorised tourist facilities. All passengers must have proof of a negative Coronavirus test performed in the 48 hours prior to boarding.
  • All passengers will be temperature checked at all ports of arrival. If symptoms of COVID-19 are found to be present, tests will be conducted. Those found to be positive will be quarantined and re-checked.
  • Any passengers arriving in Seychelles will be subject to a 14 day mandatory isolation or quarantine. All entry to the country must be approved by the Public Health Commissioner.

 

Source: GOV.UK

  • The Government of Sierra Leone has reopened Freetown International Airport as of 22 July, with strict restrictions on those arriving in the country.
  • Before departure at point of origin, passengers are required to apply for authorisation to enter Sierra Leone at travel.gov.sl. This authorisation must be presented at the check-in desk before departure, and it consists of:
  • Negative PCR COVID-19 test result issued no longer than 72 hours before departure;
  • Pre-departure public health passenger locator form;
  • Proof of payment for COVID-19 testing on arrival, paid through the online platform.
  • All arriving passengers are subject to mandatory testing for COVID-19. Passengers are given a Rapid Diagnostic Test (RDT) and a PCR test, which takes longer to analyse. If the RDT test is negative, the passenger can depart the airport and observe social distancing; if positive, the passenger will be isolated at a hotel near the airport to await their PCR result, at their own cost. If the PCR test is positive, the passenger will be transferred to a treatment facility. Passengers who were sitting close to positive case on the plane are required to self-quarantine.
  • Passengers leaving Sierra Leone are also required to undergo a COVID-19 test no more than 72 hours before departure.
  • The government has installed a number of restrictions to curb the spread of COVID-19. Wearing a mask is mandatory in all public spaces; a curfew is also in place.

 

Source: Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Ireland

  • On March 18, the Federal Government of Somalia implemented flight restrictions intended to limit the spread of COVID-19. International flights were initially suspended for a period of 15 days. On April 6, this suspension was extended for an additional 30 days, with humanitarian and cargo exceptions. Please check with your airline about flight availability and alternatives.
  • Health screenings are being implemented under the guidance of UN and World Health Organization representatives in Mogadishu.
  • Somali authorities have established a quarantine unit at Aden Adde International Airport (AAIA) in Mogadishu to isolate passengers who demonstrate symptoms of coronavirus.

 

Source: US Embassy in Somalia

  • The Government of South Africa lowered the lockdown alert level for South Africa to level 2 on August 18, 2020. 
  • Limited domestic air travel is operating within South Africa with a restriction on the number of flights per day and authorisation based on the reason for travel. 
  • All airports in South Africa remain closed to regular international commercial traffic.
  •  Several airlines are operating repatriation flights for South Africans returning home and foreign nationals leaving South Africa. 
  • Public rail, minibus taxi and bus services have resumed at reduced levels subject to social distancing and mandatory use of face masks for passengers and drivers.  Minibus taxis and buses must reduce their maximum licensed passenger seating capacity to 70% a vehicle, e-hailing services that are licensed to carry up to four passengers are limited to carrying 50% of their permissible passenger carrying capacity.  Transport services are required to provide adequate sanitizers for washing of hands of all passengers. Operators must ensure that their vehicles are sanitised before picking up and after dropping off passengers.
  • Retail shops and services, supermarkets, churches, pharmacies, schools and most businesses have resumed operations in line with safety protocols.  Public gatherings are limited to less than 50 people.  Employees are instructed to work from home where possible

 

Source: US Embassy & Consulates in South Sudan

  • Effective Monday, July 13, 2020, the Government of Sudan partially re-opened Khartoum International Airport to international flights.
  • As of July 13, 2020, Sudan authorized limited international flights to/from Ethiopia, Egypt, Turkey, and the United Arab Emirates. All domestic flights continue to be suspended.
  • Effective Wednesday July 8, 2020, the Government of Sudan moved to a 6:00pm to 6:00am curfew in Khartoum. This curfew will remain in effect until further notice. All persons are able to move freely, including across bridges, from 6:00am to 6:00pm local time.
  • Public transportation will begin operating on July 8, 2020 in response to the loosened restrictions.
  • For those traveling to Sudan, U.S. citizens of Sudanese origin, will be subject to COVID-19 testing upon arrival. All other nationals, including U.S. citizens, must possess a certified negative polymerise chain reaction (PCR) test taken within 72 hours of their arrival.
  • For suspected cases, the Ministry of Health has established isolation centres at the Khartoum and Omdurman Teaching Hospitals, Jebra Trauma Center and at the Universal Hospital in Khartoum North.

 

Source: US Embassy in South Sudan

    • All travelers whether foreigners or returning residents whose countries or airlines require them to provide negative testing for COVID-19 as a condition for traveling will be required to present a certificate on arrival. Travelers from other countries with symptoms and signs related to COVID-19 infection will undergo enhanced screening and may be tested on arrival.
    • Passengers should fill in Health Surveillance Form in the plane, or any other transport means and submit them to Port Health authorities upon arrival.
    • The Tanzanian government has lifted the ban imposed on the Kenyan flights. The move now allows all Kenyan operators, including, Kenya Airways, Fly 540 Limited, SafariLink Aviation, and AirKenya Express Limited, among others to operate and land in Tanzania.

    Source: Standard Media Group

  • The Government of Tunisia has issued revised entry procedures and zone classifications, including the removal of the quarantine requirement for travelers from “green” countries.  The Government has indicated that they will review these procedures weekly.
  • The GOT has divided countries into three zones (red, orange, and green) based on the number of cases and epidemiological situation in each country. The list is revised every few days; for the most updated list, please visit the Observatoire National des Maladies Nouvelles et Emergentes (note – countries not specifically designated “green” or “orange” are considered “red”):  https://www.facebook.com/ONMNE/.
  • “Red List” Countries (including the United States):  for individuals whose travel originates in a “red” country, only Tunisians and those with permanent residence status may enter Tunisia.
  • “Orange List” Countries:  for individuals whose travel originates in an “orange” country, Tunisians and tourists may enter Tunisia providing they present a negative COVID-19 lab test, with results received within 72 hours before travel to Tunisia and the analysis conducted no more than 120 hours prior to arrival.
  • “Green List” Countries:  for individuals whose travel originates in a “green” country, everyone may enter Tunisia without a test.

 

In addition to the testing requirement:

  • All individuals from “red” and “orange” countries, regardless of nationality, are required to quarantine upon arrival
  • Tunisians coming from “orange” countries will be asked to observe a self-quarantine for two weeks at home. 
  • Tunisian citizens and permanent residents coming from “red” countries will be placed in mandatory quarantine centers for seven days and will be subjected to screening tests on the 6th day. 
  • Travelers from “green” countries can enter with no testing or quarantine requirements

 

Source: US Embassy in Tunisia

  • On September 20, President Museveni announced changes to the current restrictions, including opening of Entebbe International Airport on October 1 and all land borders, allowing schools to re-open on October 15 for the candidate classes, permitting places of worship to gather with groups of 70 persons or less, and allowing open-air sport activities to resume without spectators. He also lifted restrictions on movement to and from border districts. The curfew (2100h-0600h) remains in place, as does the closure of gyms, bars, casinos, gaming centers, and cinemas. Motorcycle taxi (boda boda) drivers must cease their movements by 1800h.
  • Currently, only special repatriation flights, organized by the Government of Uganda, are being permitted to arrive at Entebbe International Airport. 
  • Travelers must take a certified PCR COVID-19 test no more than 72 hours before departure and obtain a negative result. Tests must have been done by a health facility that is accredited by the government of the country in which the test is conducted. Travelers will be required to present their test results to the airline to receive confirmation of their flight booking. For more information, please visit the Ministry of Foreign Affairs website.

 

Source: US Embassy in Uganda   

  • All travelers coming into Zambia will be required to provide a negative COVID-19 (SARS-CoV-2) PCR test result. The test should have been conducted within the previous 14 days prior to arrival to Zambia.  Travelers who do not meet this requirement will not be allowed into Zambia.
  • Zambia has implemented limited screening upon arrival at the international airport in Lusaka. The screening includes using no-touch thermometers (“thermo-scanners”) to check body temperature and asking travelers to complete a travel health questionnaire.
  • Symptomatic individuals will be tested for COVID-19 (SARS-Cov-2) at the airports and will be required to enter isolation protocol at a Zambian government facility.
  • The Government of the Republic of Zambia is enforcing mandatory 14-day quarantine, testing, and regular monitoring at the residence or preferred place of stay for persons entering Zambia.
  • Persons arriving are not required to quarantine at a government-designated facility but must communicate to Ministry of Health officials where they intend to reside and provide accurate contact information for regular follow-ups.
  • This includes those entering Zambia at Kenneth Kaunda International Airport (KKIA) and all other Zambian international airports, as well as land borders.

 

Source: US Embassy to Zambia

COVID-19 Resources

The World Health Organization (WHO), Africa CDC and partners are scaling up preparedness efforts for COVID-19 in the African region to implement the recommendations of the International Health Regulations Emergency Committee. 

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