CDC lowers the Covid-19 travel risk for Sweden and Romania

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(CNN) – The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention updated its travel advisory page for Covid-19 on Tuesday. Only two new locations, both in Africa, joined the crowded “high” risk range.

But perhaps more significant this week is the news that two destinations in stubborn upper Europe were downgraded to “moderate” risk.

Sweden’s Scandinavian cultural powerhouse and heavy forests in Eastern Europe and historic Romania offer two bright spots on a continent that have merged into the “high” risk range.

Level 3 The “high” risk range is now the top range in terms of risk level. Level 2 is considered a “moderate” risk. Level 1 is a “low” risk.

Level 4, previously the highest risk category, is now reserved for special circumstances, such as the extremely high number of cases, the emergence of new types of anxiety or the collapse of health care infrastructure. Under the new system, no destination has been placed on level 4 so far.

A herd of elephants is found in East Botswana.  The South African nation is now at Level 3.

A herd of elephants is found in East Botswana. The South African nation is now at Level 3.

Cameron Spencer / Getty Images

The “Level 3: Covid-19 High” category now applies to locations where more than 100 cases per 100,000 inhabitants have been reported in the last 28 days. There are two destinations joining Level 3 this week:

Botswana
Cape Verde

Botswana, a landlocked safari favorite, has moved above level 1 all the way, while Cape Verde, on the west coast of Africa in the North Atlantic, has moved above level 2.

As of June 21, there were more than 110 Level 3 destinations. About half of the approximately 235 locations monitored by the CDC have Level 3 locations.

More at level 3

The Eiffel Tower zooms in on romantic Paris twilight.  France is still at level 3 of the CDC.

The Eiffel Tower zooms in on romantic Paris twilight. France is still at level 3 of the CDC.

Martin Bureau / AFP by Getty Images

Despite the good news on Sweden and Romania, much of Europe has been there for several months since the start of the summer travel season. As of June 21, the following popular European destinations were among those remaining at Level 3:

France
Germany
Greece
Ireland
Italy
The Netherlands
Norway
Spain
United Kingdom

But it’s not just European favorites who find themselves at Level 3. Numerous notable travel destinations around the world fall into the ‘high’ risk category, including:

Brazil
Canada
Costa Rica
Malaysia
Mexico
South Korea
Thailand

The CDC recommends that you stay up-to-date with your Covid-19 vaccines before you travel to a Level 3 destination. To be “To date“It means you have not only the full initial vaccination but any booster for which you are eligible.

Level 2

Bierton is the most important Saxon village with fortified churches in Transylvania, Romania.  The Eastern European nation is now at Level 2.

Bierton is one of the most important Saxon villages, with fortified churches in Transylvania, Romania. The Eastern European nation is now at Level 2.

Andrea Ricordi / Moment RF / Getty Images

Over 50 to 100 Covid-19 cases per 100,000 inhabitants have been reported in the last 28 days in places with the designation “Level 2: Covid-19 Moderate”. A total of six locations were moved to this level on Tuesday:

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Bolivia
Ethiopia
Kenya
Morocco
Romania
Sweden

Unlike the two European nations, advancing to Level 2 was not really good news for Bolivia, Kenya and Morocco, which were at Level 1. (Ethiopia did not appear in the roundup last week).

In her Comprehensive travel guideThe CDC recommends that you avoid all international travel until you have been fully vaccinated.

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Level 1

To stay in “Level 1: Low Covid-19”, the destination must have 49 or fewer new cases per 100,000 inhabitants in the last 28 days. Six locations around the world were added to the series on June 21:

• El Salvador
Fiji
Guinea
Moldova
Saint Eustatius
Tanzania

The move was especially good news for Saint Eustatius, a small Dutch island in the Caribbean, which was at Level 3.

Last week, El Salvador, Fiji and Moldova were at Level 2 while Guinea and Tanzania in Africa were “unknown”.

Unknown

Finally, there are places that the CDC considers to be “unknown” risk due to lack of information. Usually, but not always, these are small, distant places or places of ongoing war or unrest. This week, four places were added to the series:

Bhutan
Comoros
Democratic Republic of the Congo
Ghana

The CDC definitely advises against traveling to these places as the risks are unknown. Other locations in the range include Cambodia, the Canary Islands and Macau.

The medical specialist pays attention to the level of risk

CNN Medical Analyst Dr. According to Lena Wayne, the transmission rate is just “a guide” for calculating the personal risk of travelers.

We have moved on to an epidemic where people need to make their own decisions based on their medical circumstances as well as risk tolerance when it comes to Covid-19 infection, “said Wayne, an emergency physician and professor. Health policy and management at George Washington University Milken Institute School of Public Health.

According to Wayne, there are other weighting factors besides the transmission rate.

“The second is to be careful and follow where you are going and then the third is what you are going to do once you get there,” she said.

“Are you planning to visit a lot of attractions and go to the indoor bar? It’s very different from you where you plan to sleep on the beach all day and not talk to anyone else. It’s very different. It’s dangerous. A very different level. “

“Vaccination is the most important safety factor for travel, as non-vaccinated travelers are more likely to get sick and infect others with COVID-19,” Wayne said.

And it is also important to consider what you will do if you finish a positive test away from home.

“Of course, if people have symptoms or exposure while traveling, they need to be tested, and if they test positive, to follow CDC Isolation GuideWayne recently told CNN Travel.
If you are concerned about a travel-specific health condition not related to Covid-19, Check it out here.

Top image: Twilight at Riederholmen Church in Stockholm, Sweden. (K’Nub / Moment RF / Getty Images)

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