Coronavirus: latest news, advice and travel information

Stay up to date with the latest coronavirus guidance and developments in Bahrain

Coronavirus: latest news, advice and travel information

To check the current coronavirus measures and travel guidelines for your country, click here.

At this point, it goes without saying that coronavirus has shaken up all of our day-to-day lives.

So far the virus has spread across six continents, and governments around the world are responding by encouraging or mandating precautionary measures to help stem the coronavirus spread.

With events constantly changing, we’ve put together this handy FAQ to bring you some help, tips and perspective. You don’t need to panic, and for the moment, life should continue as normal (even if it does mean slightly more Netflix than usual). But it won’t hurt to stay clued up on the official advice, as detailed below.

Think you’re coming down with something? Worried you’ll have to cancel your holiday plans? Stay up to date with our guide to the latest coronavirus guidance and developments.

What is coronavirus?

Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) is a respiratory illness that started in animals and is now being transmitted between humans. The symptoms include coughs, fever, shortness of breath and breathing difficulties. First identified in Wuhan, China, the virus has (as of March 25) affected more than 420,000 people in 197 countries. Some 18,900 have died, while around half have already recovered. On March 11 the World Health Organisation labelled the outbreak a ’pandemic’.

How bad is coronavirus?

Unlike flu, there is no vaccine (yet), and recovery depends on the strength of the immune system. In severe cases the virus may cause pneumonia and/or organ failure.

Compared to Sars (another coronavirus that hit headlines in 2003), the mortality rate of COVID-19 is low: around 3.4 percent according to the latest WHO estimate. This is, however, significantly higher than regular seasonal flu, which is fatal in around 0.1 percent of cases. So far, COVID-19 also appears to be more contagious than seasonal flu.

The elderly and those with long-term conditions like diabetes, cancer and chronic lung disease are most likely to develop a severe illness relating to COVID-19. The death rate is ten times higher among the very elderly compared with the middle-aged, according to the WHO. Children are less likely to be affected.

Which countries have been worst hit by coronavirus?

As of March 25, Italy has recorded more than 69,000 cases, the USA more than 55,000, Spain more than 42,000 and Germany 32,000. Iran and France are also managing major outbreaks, with more than 24,000 cases and 22,000 cases respectively.

As of March 25, there have been 392 cases recorded in Bahrain. You can keep track of the spread of the disease on this map here, and you can keep up to date with all the cases in Bahrain here. The WHO advises against travelling to areas experiencing ongoing transmission of COVID-19.

To check the current coronavirus measures and travel guidelines for your country, click here.

How will coronavirus affect my day-to-day life?

First: don’t panic. The spread of the virus outside China wasn’t unexpected, and governments have been making plans and issuing advice.

If you’re in Bahrain

As of March 25, the local authorities have decreed that the following organisations and services suspend operation until further notice:

  • Cinemas
  • Gyms
  • Swimming pools
  • Schools, kindergartens and universities
  • Public gatherings with more than five people
  • Retail shops, with the exception of grocery stores, pharmacies, banks and bakeries

The government is urging citizens to only leave the home to go to work or hospitals, or to buy essential goods. If you are exercising outside, you must do so on your own, or at most with one other person while keeping at least a metre away from each other.

Restaurants are now delivery and external orders only. Grocery stores will remain open, but the first hour of openings will be for the elderly and pregnant women only.

Other measures being taken to halt the spread of coronavirus include screening at the airport. The Ministry of Health has shared this video to explain the processes anyone travelling to the Kingdom will have to go through. Flights have been stopped to a number of destinations, including Iran, and all returnees will have to self-isolate for 14 days.

What are the official guidelines for my country?

– Australia
Travel advice
Coronavirus information

– Canada
Travel advice
Coronavirus information

– China
National Health Commission
Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention

– France
Travel advice
Coronavirus information

– Germany
Travel advice
Coronavirus information

– Italy
Travel advice
Coronavirus information

– Japan
Travel advice
Coronavirus information

– New Zealand
Travel advice
Coronavirus information

– Singapore
Travel advice
Coronavirus information

– South Korea
Korea Tourism Organization
Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

– Thailand
Travel advice
Coronavirus information

– United Kingdom
Travel advice
Coronavirus information

– United States
Travel advice
Coronavirus information

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Only delivery services will be available from March 26 until April 9

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