Centers for Disease Control and Prevention UpdatedIts international travel recommendations were released Monday. This is in addition to removing previous COVID-19 risk assessments.
Previously the CDC applied “Level 4” risk to countries and territories with high levels of COVID-19 infection. This category was filled by 89 countries or territories, according to the CDC. AdviceAvoid these places. Travel to these areas if necessary.
Since then, the agency has been NameIts highest risk category, “Level 4: Special Circumstances/Do Not Travel”, and all other countries were removed from it. In statementThe CDC stated last week that it will reserve the designation in “special circumstances” such as rapidly escalating cases or high numbers, emergence or collapse of healthcare infrastructure or a rapid increase in case count. Level 3: COVID-19 high, the next highest designation from CDC, now covers 122 locations. It advises travelers to be up-to-date with COVID-19 vaccines but not to travel wholesale.
COVID-19 can be found in many countries around the world. This makes it important that each traveler determines his or her own risk tolerance. Safety is not just about choosing a country without active COVID-19, it also requires that you assess your current vaccination status and any preexisting medical conditions.
A new advisory system by the CDC makes it clear that not all high-COVID-19 areas are uninsurmountable dangers to be visited. On Sunday, the CDC It is advisedWhen visiting Norway, the Central African Republic, South Korea and Papua New Guinea as well as Australia and Vietnam, travelers should be cautious about COVID. Given the vast differences in health capabilities between these countries, it makes no sense to recommend the same amount of medical precaution for each one. Some of the most desirable health systems are found in Sweden, Switzerland and Denmark. The best in health care in the world, but in terms of COVID contagion, the CDC considered them as risky to visit as Somalia, a country with only one surgeonFor every one million people, a COVID vaccine rate of only 8.5%.
The CDC has decided to not issue a blanket warning against traveling to high-transmission areas. Instead, it will only recommend that you avoid travel to those countries. According to the agency NotesThis guidance will be “a stronger alert that helps the public to understand the most pressing issues.” The advisory structure still hinges on questionable criteria—for instance, a focus on “extremely high case counts” rather than on hospitalizations and deaths—but it’s an overdue acknowledgment that we can’t always view COVID-19 transmission as catastrophic.
Relaxed travel suggestions are an welcome departure, particularly when made with major airlines DroppingFlorida Judge issues mask mandates Get ridYesterday was the CDC’s transportation mask mandate. Certain travel-related policies—like the CDC’s Requirement that travelers to the U.S. test negative before entering the country—are still in place, and the CDC could very well roll back the new advisory structure. This shifting tide gives us some hope that the future of travel may not be as grim.