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News: COVID-19 – WHO categorizes COVID-19 as a pandemic

12 March 2020

In its media briefing on 11 March, the WHO has categorized the COVID-19 outbreak as a pandemic. It stated that in the last two weeks, the number of cases of COVID-19 has increased 13-fold, and the number of affected countries has tripled.

With over 124,500 confirmed cases in 118 countries asper the latest COVID-19 situation dashboard, WHO has been assessing this outbreak around the clock and is deeply concerned both by the alarming levels of spread and severity, and by the alarming levels of inaction.

After the declaration, many countries might enforce stricter travel restrictions. The US and India have already announced restrictions on travellers, and this will affect any planned crew changes for the ship operators. It is not clear how these travel restrictions will affect the commercial shipping. The latest update on travel restrictions imposed on passengers by various countries is available on the IATA website.

The USCG (Sector Houston-Galveston Port State Control) has issued Marine Safety Information Bulletin (MSIB) 10-20 on the screening measures for COVID-19 which is available for download on the right.

The Maritime Industry Australia Ltd. (MIAL) has updated its dedicated page on COVID-19. The latest advisory from Australia Border Force on restrictions on entry for commercial ships is available for download on the right.
Metropole, Greece has provided us with the latest update (available on the right) in respect of the recent practices at Turkish ports, with the restrictions being imposed for commercial ships.

Members may contact their club contact in case they need any assistance.