Tuesday, April 7, 2020

Tracking Coronavirus in Countries with and without Travel Bans

Based on government statements, official state media stories, and reporting from mainstream independent journalism outlets, Think Global Health has identified ninety-six countries and territories that have imposed some form of travel restriction against China during the COVID-19 outbreak. Restrictions include:

  • Border closures, defined as a partial or total closure of a land border with China;
  • Entry or exit bans, which generally restrict the ability of nationals to depart from their country for travel to China or the ability of foreign travelers, nationals, or both from entering a country after traveling from or transiting through China;
  • Visa restrictions, which include total or partial visa suspensions or restrictions, such as halting visa-on-arrival programs, for travelers originating from or traveling through China; and
  • Flight suspensions, which include government bans on flights to or from China and suspension of flights to and from China by state-owned airlines.

The report finds that these travel restrictions have neither stopped the spread of this novel coronavirus nor prevented it from becoming a pandemic. It suggests the combination of travel restrictions within China and international travel restrictions against China may have delayed the spread of COVID-19, but more so in nations that also use that time to reduce community spread of the virus. 



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