Wednesday 22 September 2021

COVID-19 Costa Rica: 68 new cases, malls, services, and beaches with expanded hours

Malls and retails stores to open on weekends, beaches will stay opening to 9:30 am including weekends, vehicular restrictions remain unchanged

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(QCOSTARICA) Two before most of the country enters a new phase of reopening of activities and businesses, 68 more cases of COVID-19 are reported.

As the days go by, the capital begins to recover pedestrians and activity.

The accumulated number of infections from March to June 18 reached 1,939, reported the Health Minister, Daniel Salas. There are 864 women and 1075 men, of whom 1412 are Costa Rican and 488 foreigners, 39 people are in nationality investigation.

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There are 937 recovered, 38 more than the previous day and 25 people hospitalized, three of them in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU).

According to the schedule established in May, Salas confirmed that as of this Saturday, a series of activities are reactivated and others that were already working are extended in hours or days.

Specifically, these are the changes:

  • Malls, retail stores may open on weekends and at 50% capacity.
  • Cinemas and theaters can operate at 50% capacity on the weekend. However, the Teatro Nacional will continue closed.
  • Places of worship can be open with a maximum of 75 people and a distance of 1.8 meters between attendees. There should be no chanting and good ventilation must be ensured.
  • Access to beaches will be expanded from 5 am to 9:30 am, including weekends and social bubbles.
  • Bars, public shows, casinos, discos, massive events, and amusement parks remain closed.
    Border closure is maintained.
  • Teleworking is encouraged.
  • Vehicle restriction is maintained at customary times.

None of the opening measures will be applied to orange alert zones due to the high circulation of the virus produced by COVID-19. They are:

  • Guatuso.
  • Guácimo, distrito de Duacarí.
  • La Cruz.
  • Los Chiles.
  • Pococí
  • Río Cuarto.
  • San Carlos, específicamente los distritos de La Fortuna, Venecia, Aguas Zarcas, Cutris, Pital and Pocosol.
  • Sarapiquí, específicamente los distritos de Llanuras del Gaspar and Curuña.
  • Siquirres, específicamente los distritos de Pacuarito and Reventazón.
  • Upala
  • San Ramón, distrito de Peñas Blancas

Minister Salas said that, despite the fact that in the initial plan given in May the opening of bars at 50% of capacity was contemplated at this time, they decided not to do so.

“While there is no community transmission, we are in the midst of an increase in cases in a second pandemic wave. It is also being taken into account that bars represent a riskier activity, because many people lose the notion of being in a pandemic. We are taking it for later, possibly for the next phase,” he explained.

International tourists

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He was very emphatic, in addition, that international tourism will not be enabled until they have a health protocol that meets “the stringent measures for the population.”

The last extension of the border restrictions was to June 30, no new date was mentioned on Thursday.

“It would be in a gradual, controlled way, with traceability of the people who enter. We would not be enabling the entry of tourists (from countries) with very strong transmission. We have been making progress with Civil Aviation, Immigration, the Ministry of Transport, the Costa Rican Tourism Institute, the Ministry of Health and other entities in the best measures we can apply,” he said.

It is necessary to define, for example, tests to enter the country and what that test would be, in addition to checking vital signs. “All with the idea that this opening is a responsible health act of the highest level.”

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"Rico" is the crazy mind behind the Q media websites, a series of online magazines where everything is Q! In these times of new normal, stay at home. Stay safe. Stay healthy.

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