IOM COVID 19 Response - Situation Report 25 (24 July 2020)
Jul 24 2020
Since it was initially reported on 31 December 2019, the disease known as COVID-19 has spread rapidly across the globe, leading the World Health Organization (WHO) to declare it a pandemic on 11 March 2020. As of 24 July, over 15 million confirmed cases and close to 620,000 deaths have been reported globally since the outbreak began. Confirmed cases have been reported in more than 200 countries/territories/areas, with new cases and countries reporting daily.
Travel restrictions stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic continue to cause mobility around the world to remain heavily restricted, or, in the most extreme cases, entirely suspended. Based upon the disparate health impacts of COVID-19 and resulting concerns in various areas, travel restrictions continue to be tightened or eased by governments and/or authorities. As of 23 July 2020, a total of 219 countries, territories or areas have issued 75,852 travel restrictions indicating an increase of 5 per cent from the 72,291 restrictions recorded on 16 July. There has been an increase of 19 per cent in medical restrictions and a 10 per cent increase in restrictions on specific nationalities. Simultaneously, there has been a decrease of 3 per cent on visas and a decrease of 3 per cent in restrictions on passengers arriving from specific countries, territories or areas. In parallel to existing travel restrictions, a total of 177 countries, territories or areas have issued 656 exceptions enabling mobility despite blanket travel restrictions. Between 16 and 23 July 2020, 15 countries, territories or areas have issued 33 new exceptions while 7 countries, territories or areas have removed 12 exceptions.
In migrant camps, camp-like settings, reception centres and dormitories, there are increasing reports of confirmed cases and a heightened risk of contracting and spreading COVID-19 due to overcrowding, inadequate sanitation, poor nutrition, and limited access to health services. These conditions greatly contribute to the risk of an infectious disease outbreak in locations that currently have no known cases and/or to increasing the risk of transmission if it is already present. To address these and other challenges, IOM missions around the world are working with governments and partners to ensure that migrants, whether in regular or irregular situations, as well as returnees and forcibly displaced persons, are included in all aspects of COVID-19 preparedness and response efforts.