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Montevideo, September 28th 2023 - 11:25 UTC



Chile's physicians discourage traveling to Argentina due to Omicron

Saturday, January 8th 2022 - 12:32 UTC
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Long delays and a double checkpoint system make crossing the Andes not too appealing Long delays and a double checkpoint system make crossing the Andes not too appealing

Chile's Medical College said that the coronavirus situation in Argentina was “critical” as a result of the Omicron variant and advised against traveling to the neighboring country.

“It does not seem like a good idea to have the Paso Los Libertadores open,” stressed José Miguel Bernucci, national secretary of the Medical College of Chile.

“We believe that it is not the best time to travel to Argentina or for people who are in Argentina to travel to Chile because of the level of contagion that we see through Omicron,” he went on.

He also underscored the importance of face masks and vaccination to make the Omicron wave “not so severe,” but warned problems might arise if hospitals are overwhelmed. “Today we have an occupancy of critical beds of around 90%, of which 30% correspond to COVID cases. So with a small increase (in more serious infections) the weak balance of our health system could be upset,” he highlighted.

He also explained Chile was beginning to have a concrete history of a growth in infections. “In Atacama, the effective R, that is, the number of people that someone can infect, is over 4. This is something never seen before, then there are certain areas where the situation is very severe.”

Meanwhile, Mendoza [Argentina] Migrations Official Juan Manuel Serrano said very few Argentines were interested in going to Chile for vacational purposes after travel restrictions were lifted Jan. 4, citing there were still “too many requirements for entry and that the costs involved are high,” in addition to long delays at the crossings, with a double checkpoint mechanism at Horcones and Los Libertadores, unlike before the pandemic when everything went through a unified customs office.

Another major delay is due to “the control of the documentation and the tests that are carried out when entering Chile,” Serrano explained. “There is still a long way to go before we return to normal,” he went on.

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  • Marti Llazo

    6 January

    Daily new COVID cases for Argentina ==> 1311 per 100000 population

    Daily new COVID cases for Chile ==> 94 per 100000 population

    Closing the frontiers seems justified

    Jan 09th, 2022 - 02:26 am 0
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