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COVID-19 pandemic in Paraguay
COVID-19 Equipment to Paraguay (05890085) (49987599432).jpg
Equipment for responding to the pandemic, donated to Paraguay by the International Atomic Energy Agency
COVID-19 Outbreak Cases in Paraguay.png
Map of departments with confirmed coronavirus cases:[1]
  ≤1000 confirmed
  1000–4999 confirmed
  ≥5000 confirmed
DiseaseCOVID-19
Virus strainSARS-CoV-2
LocationParaguay
First outbreakGuayaquil, Ecuador (local)
Wuhan, China (global)
Index caseCentral department
Arrival date7 March 2020
(9 months and 3 days)
Confirmed cases90,958
Recovered64,527
Deaths
1,914
Fatality rate2.1%
Government website
www.mspbs.gov.py/covid-19 (in Spanish)

The COVID-19 pandemic in Paraguay is part of the ongoing worldwide pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). The virus was confirmed to have reached Paraguay on 7 March 2020 in a 32-year-old man from Guayaquil, Ecuador, living in San Lorenzo, Central department.

On 10 March, the Paraguayan government suspended classes and all activities that involve groups of people, as well as public and private events, with the goal of avoiding the spread of the virus, in accordance with Decree no. 3442/2020.[2] Other preventive measures have been adopted as time has gone by, such as restrictions on commerce and movement, suspension of flights, closure of borders, restricting entry of foreigners, curfews, and strengthening controls to ensure compliance with the measures.[3]

On 20 March, the first death and the first case of community transmission were confirmed. The government declared a total quarantine until 3 May, with free movement completely restricted. Public movement was restricted to buying food, medicine and other essential items.[4][5][6] From May 4, Paraguay implemented the so-called “Intelligent/Smart” Quarantine, a gradual return to work and social activities with social distancing and hygiene measures. However, the government decided to maintain the closure of borders and other restrictions.

Since October 5, advance to a kind

The COVID-19 pandemic in Paraguay is part of the ongoing worldwide pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). The virus was confirmed to have reached Paraguay on 7 March 2020 in a 32-year-old man from Guayaquil, Ecuador, living in San Lorenzo, Central department.

On 10 March, the Paraguayan government suspended classes and all activities that involve groups of people, as well as public and private events, with the goal of avoiding the spread of the virus, in accordance with Decree no. 3442/2020.[2] Other preventive measures have been adopted as time has gone by, such as restrictions on commerce and movement, suspension of flights, closure of borders, restricting entry of foreigners, curfews, and strengthening controls to ensure compliance with the measures.[3]

On 20 March, the first death and the first case of community transmission were confirmed. The government declared a total quarantine until 3 May, with free movement completely restricted. Public movement was restricted to buying food, medicine and other essential items.[4][5][6] From May 4, Paraguay implemented the so-called “Intelligent/Smart” Quarantine, a gradual return to work and social activities with social distancing and hygiene measures. However, the government decided to maintain the closure of borders and other restrictions.

Since October 5, advance to a kind of new normal known as the "covid way of living", releasing most of the activities while maintaining health care until the appearance of some vaccine or cure. International opening is already allowed, such as international flights or the opening of land borders. Eventually, specific exceptions could be raised by zones or by a particular economic sector, if the circumstances require it. Distance education and night curfew are maintained indefinitely.[7]

Date
# of cases
# of deaths
2020-03-07 1(n.a.) 1(=) 2020-03-10
5(+400%) 2020-03-11
5(=) 2020-03-12
6(+20%) 2020-03-13
7(+17%) 2020-03-14
7(=) 2020-03-15
8(+14%) 2020-03-16
9(+12%) 2020-03-17
11(+22%) 2020-03-18
11(=) 2020-03-19
13(+18%) 2020-03-20
18(+38%) 1(n.a.) 2020-03-21
22(+22%) On 12 January, the World Health Organization (WHO) confirmed that a novel coronavirus was the cause of a respiratory illness in a cluster of people in Wuhan City, Hubei Province, China, which was reported to the WHO on 31 December 2019.[8][9]

Unlike SARS of 2003, the case fatality ratio for COVID-19 [10][11] has been much lower, but the transmission has been significantly greater, with a significant total death toll.[12][10]

Timeline

March 2020

  • 7 March: the first case was confirmed in Asunción. The patient is a 32-year-old man who arrived from Guayaquil, Ecuador.[13][14]
  • 10 March: Paraguay suspended public school sessions and large-scale public and private events for 15 days.[15][16]
  • 13 March: Paraguay suspended flights coming from Europe.[17]
  • 15 March: Paraguay confirmed partial closures of its borders, restricted crowds and imposed a night time curfew.[18]
  • 20 March: Paraguay confirmed the first death in the country due to coronavirus, and extended a previously announced quarantine through 12 April, and called for a social isolation policy (total lockdown). Public movement is restricted to buying food, medicine and other essential items.[19]

April 2020

  • 8 April: Nationwide quarantine (total lockdown) extended through April 19.[20]
  • 17 April: Nationwide quarantine (total lockdown) extended through April 26.[citation needed]
  • 20 April: For the first time in 29 days, no new cases were found.[21]
  • 24 April: Nationwide quarantine (total lockdown) extended through May 3. Paraguay will implement from May 4 the so-called “Smart/Intelligent Quarantine”, gradual return to work and social activities with social distancing and hygiene measures. However, The government decided to maintain the closure of borders and implement distance education classes until December.[22]

May 2020

  • 4 May: Starts the Phase 1 of the "Smart/Intelligent" Quarantine.[23][7]
  • 25 May: Starts the Phase 2 of the "Smart/Intelligent" Quarantine.

June 2020

  • 9 Jun: The Paraguayan government has announced the total closure of the city of San Roque González de Santa Cruz for a period of 15 days, starting on 9 June, and the city will return to the total lockdown phase.[24]
  • 15 Jun: Starts the Phase 3 of the "Smart/Intelligent" Quarantine, with the exception of the Paraguarí and Concepción Departments, which will remain in Phase 2, with the local government controlling circulation at main access points to those Departments for 14 days.[25]
  • 25 Jun: Phase 3 (Intelligent Quarantine) extended through July 19. The city of San Roque González de Santa Cruz return to Phase 2.
  • 27 Jun: Community cases outnumber shelter cases for the first time, already reaching 56% of total confirmed cases.

July 2020

  • 13 July: Paraguarí and Concepción Departments starts the Phase 3 of the "Smart/Intelligent" Quarantine.
  • 17 July: Paraguay has passed 100,000 tests (PCR)
  • 20 July: Starts the Phase 4 of the "Smart/Intelligent" Quarantine, with the exception of Asunción (D.C), Central and Alto Paraná Departments.
  • 29 July: Due to the increase in cases, the department of Alto Paraná returned to lockdown on July 29 for two weeks, with some authorizations of Phase 1 and commerce enabled between 5:00am to 5:00pm.[26]

August 2020

  • 8 August: Phase 3 (Intelligent Quarantine) extended through August 30 in Asunción and Central department.[27]
  • 14 August: Lockdown extended through August 23 in Alto Paraná department.
  • 15 August: Phase 4 (Intelligent Quarantine) extended through August 30 in the rest of the country.
  • 23 August: Asunción and Central department enter a Social Quarantine (Phase 3 with more restrictions, especially in the social sphere). Lockdown extended through September 6 in Alto Paraná department, with some relaxations.
  • 30 August: Phase 4 (Intelligent Quarantine) extended through September 6 in the rest of the country. Boquerón deparrtment and the city of Carmelo Peralta (in Alto Paraguay department) come back to Phase 3.

September 2020

  • 3 September: Quarantine extended until September 20.
  • 20 September: Quarantine extended until October 4.

October 2020

  • 5 October: Starts the "new normality".

Government responses

First measures

On 10 March 2020, the Paraguayan government suspended classes and all activities that involve groups of people, as well as public and private events, with the goal of avoiding the spread of the virus, in accordance with Decree no. 3442/2020.[2]

Other preventive measures have been adopted as time has gone by, such as restrictions on commerce and movement, suspends flights, closure of borders, restricting entry of foreigners, curfews, and strengthening controls to ensure compliance with the measures.[3]

National lockdown

On 20 March 2020, the first death and the first case of community transmission were confirmed. The government declared a total quarantine (lockdown) until 3 May, with free movement restricted completely. Public movement was restricted to buying food, medicine and other essential items.[4][5][6]

The city of San Roque González de Santacruz (department of Paraguarí) returned to lockdown on June 9 through June 24, due to the uncontrolled increase in the number of contaminations.

Easing of restrictions: Intelligent Quarantine

Paraguay implemented from May 4 the so-called “Intelligent/Smart” Quarantine, gradual return to work and social activities with social distancing and hygiene measures in 4 phases. However, The government decided to maintain the closure of borders, implement distance education classes, and the night-time curfew indefinitely.[7]

  • Phase 1: consists of the reopening of industries, small businesses with up to 3 people inside, and all delivery services. Outdoor individual physical activity, such as walking, can occur within 500 meters of a person's home. Access to public and private parks for walking/running trails only is permitted but observing the following: From 5:00am to 10:00am access for people, age 65 and older. From 10:30am to 8:00pm access for people between the ages of 10 and 64. The use of common areas such as playgrounds, exercise machines, courts and benches are not allowed. Vehicle traffic restriction by license plate.
  • Phase 2 consists of the reopening of corporate buildings with up to 50% of the workforce present and under a rotation schedule. This includes, civil construction, shopping centres and medium-sized businesses, hairdressers (up to 30 minutes per appointment), religious services (such as weddings and baptisms) with no more than ten people present, and moving services. This is to be carried out in compliance with strict health and safety measures, including the washing of hands coming in and out of venues/sites, mandatory physical distancing and the wearing of face masks at all times.
  • Phase 3: consists of the limited reopening of restaurants, religious activities in groups of up to 20 persons, higher school (only exams, thesis presentation, practical and laboratory classes; not include classroom classes), indoor gyms by appointment only, outdoor exercise for up to two people, drive-in cinema and other cultural activities with social distancing measures. This also includes individual physical activity in sports clubs and private parks.
  • Phase 4: consists of opening the hotel and cultural sector under a strict health protocol. Religious activities in groups of up to 50 persons (a distance of two meters between each person and the registration of participants), in addition to concerts / music festivals, suitable cinemas and other activities in the cultural sector. Social events are allowed up to 20 people and private social gatherings (preferably family) of up to 10 people. As for sports activities, up to 4 people are allowed in any non-contact sport.[24]

In Phase 1 and 2, the ban on all non-essential movement was in place from 9pm to 5am. In Phase 3 and 4, the ban on all non-essential movement is in place from 11pm to 5am (Sundays to Thursdays) and from 12am to 5am (Friday to Saturday).[citation needed]

Return of restrictions in some areas

Due to the increase in cases, the department of Alto Paraná returned to lockdown on July 29 for three weeks, with some authorizations of Phase 1 and commerce enabled between 5:00am to 5:00pm (called Phase 0,5).[26] On August 24, the lockdown extended through September 20 in Alto Paraná department, with some relataxions, for example, the commerce enabled until 8pm. Since September 21, this department enter a Social Quarantine.

On August 23, Asunción and Central department enter a Social Quarantine (Phase 3 with more restrictions, especially in the social sphere,for example, curfew between 8pm to 5am, prohibition of alcohol sales at night, long-distance trips suspended on weekends, individual physical activity, etc.).

On August 31, Boquerón deparrtment and the city of Carmelo Peralta (in Alto Paraguay department) come back to Phase 3.

On September 13, Caaguazú department and Concepción department enter a Social Quarantine.

New normality

As announced on October 2 by the Minister of Health, the phases of Intelligent Quarantine in the country are finalized, to advance to a kind of new normal known as the "covid way of living", due to the plateau reached in the contagions. Eventually, specific exceptions could be raised by zones or by a particular economic sector, if the circumstances require it, as stated by the same.

From October 5, interdepartmental circulation will be allowed without restrictions, and free circulation every day between 05:00 am and 00:00 am. The operation of hotels, and social and cultural events is allowed, with a restriction of up to 50 people, among others.

Since October 15, the opening of borders with Brazil is available. Likewise, since October 21, the opening of airports with commercial flights is available. Those passengers who stay more than 7 days must comply with mandatory quarantine.

Shelters

Since end of March 2020, the government has adapted existing infrastructure of military bases, warehouses, police stations, and even indoor sports complexes called "shelters" (albergues, in Spanish) to accommodate large groups of individuals -who return from abroad (mainly from Brazil and neighboring countries)- including pregnant women, underage children, and the elderly. The government, however, has been unable to quickly accommodate the hundreds of migrants arriving at its borders.[citation needed]

Returnees undergo a mandatory minimum quarantine of 14 days, which can be extended if required. Likewise, they have the alternative of quarantining in certain hotels or lodgings (called Hotel Salud) in the event that they can afford it. From April to much of June, the majority of confirmed cases came from shelters, however at the end of the same month the panorama changed, with community (local) cases prevailing over those detected in shelters.

The advisory minister for International Affairs of the Presidency of the Republic, reported that by the end of June more than 8,000 returnees had already passed through shelters (at least 10% of them testing positive for coronavirus).  According to the Inter-institutional Coordination Center (CCI), by then, about 70 shelters and 40 'Salud' hotels were located in different parts of the country.[28]

Most of these facilities do not comply with the MSPBS's public health protocols of ensuring social distancing and access to medical attention. Groups of up to 160 people are housed in rooms of closely placed bunk beds, and shared spaces do not allow for adequate physical distance.[citation needed]

Impacts

Economy

Paraguay's economy will contract 2.5% until 5% in 2020 due to the halt in economic activities brought on by social isolation measures to contain the coronavirus. The projection is a stark turnaround from the Central Bank of Paraguay in December 2019 estimate of 4.1% growth in the year. The bank's new estimate also goes further than the International Monetary Fund, which projected in mid-April a contraction of 1.0%.[citation needed]

But the government of President Mario Abdo Benítez has been heavily criticised for failing to support people left without income during the total quarantine. Sixty-five per cent of Paraguay's workers earn their living in the informal economy and have no access to benefits during the coronavirus crisis.[citation needed]

Event cancellations

As social distancing entered the public lexicon, emergency management leaders encouraged the cancellation of large gatherings to slow the rate of infection,[citation needed] these are a few cancelled or postponed events:[citation needed]

Event Original Date Venue Status Ref.
Chayanne concert March 14, 2020 SND Arena Postponed [29]
Karol G concert March 14, 2020 Jockey Club Postponed
Soda Stereo concert March 18, 2020 Jockey Club Postponed
Asunciónico March 31 and April 7, 2020 Jockey Club Postponed to late 2020 [30]
Kiss concert May 7, 2020 Jockey Club Postponed

Statistics

The tables and graphs show the development of the pandemic starting from 7 March 2020.

Chart

  Total cases   Active cases   Recoveries   Deaths

New cases, per day


No. of deaths in total

Hospitalized cases

Summary by department

As of November 24
Department Cases[1] Deaths[31] Recoveries[32]
17/17 75,058 1,647 53,502
In Shelters 1,672 N/A N/A
Central Department Central 35,018 601 23,850
Asunción Asunción (D.C) 18,335 313 13,147
Alto Paraná Department Alto Paraná 7,418 293 6,831
Caaguazú Department Caaguazú 2,497 78 2,038
Itapúa Department Itapúa 2,033 41 1,213
Cordillera Department Cordillera 1,798 39 1,090
Guairá Department Guairá 1,571 40 1,141
Concepción Department, Paraguay Concepción 1,484 53 1,257
Paraguarí Department Paraguarí 964 32 598
San Pedro Department, Paraguay San Pedro 877 25 609
Presidente Hayes Department Presidente Hayes 816 18 533
Canindeyú Department Canindeyú 667 13 463
Amambay Department Amambay 615 29 491
Boquerón Department Boquerón 544 23 482
Caazapá Department Caazapá 515 10 339
Misiones Department Misiones 501 15 247
Ñeembucú Department Ñeembucú 383 13 204
Alto Paraguay Department Alto Paraguay 183 5 171
Source: Reporte - COVID-19 (Ministry of Public Health and Social Welfare - Paraguay)[33]

By age

By age Confirmed Cases (%)
0-9 2%
10-19 5%
20-29 27%
30-39 28%
40-49 16%
50-59 11%
60-69 7%
70-79 3%
+80 1%

Other data

this information is per: (as of October 13)[citation needed]

  • In Shelters (imported cases): 3%
  • Locals (out of shelters, communitary cases): 97%
  • Men: 52%
  • Women: 48%
  • Tests: around 317,000
  • Hospitalized cases: 780 (156 in UTI)

See also

References

  1. ^ a b Confirmed cases not detected in Supervised Isolations (shelters) designated by the Government.
  2. ^ a b "En Paraguay: Suspenden clases y prohíben aglomeración de personas por 15 días". rockandpop.cl (in Spanish). 11 March 2020. Retrieved 22 March 2020.
  3. ^ a b "Advierten que cierre de fronteras será para personas, no para mercaderías".
  4. ^ a b "Suman 18 casos de coronavirus y se confirma propagación comunitaria". ultimahora.com. Retrieved 21 March 2020.
  5. ^ a b "Ministerio de Salud confirma primer fallecido por coronavirus en Paraguay". ultimahora.com. Retrieved 21 March 2020.
  6. ^ a b "La cuarentena irá hasta el domingo 12 de abril y aislamiento total con excepciones hasta el 28 de marzo – Nacionales – ABC Color". www.abc.com.py. Retrieved 21 March 2020.
  7. ^ a b c https://www.reuters.com/article/us-health-coronavirus-paraguay/paraguay-plans-switch-to-smart-quarantine-after-coronavirus-curve-flattens-idUSKCN2262XZ
  8. ^ Elsevier. "Novel Coronavirus Information Center". Elsevier Connect. Archived from the original on 30 January 2020. Retrieved 15 March 2020.
  9. ^ Reynolds, Matt (4 March 2020). "What is coronavirus and how close is it to becoming a pandemic?". Wired UK. ISSN 1357-0978. Archived from the original on 5 March 2020. Retrieved 5 March 2020.
  10. ^ a b "Crunching the numbers for coronavirus". Imperial News. Archived from the original on 19 March 2020. Retrieved 15 March 2020.
  11. ^ "High consequence infectious diseases (HCID); Guidance and information about high consequence infectious diseases and their management in England". GOV.UK. Archived from the original on 3 March 2020. Retrieved 17 March 2020.
  12. ^ "World Federation Of Societies of Anaesthesiologists – Coronavirus". www.wfsahq.org. Archived from the original on 12 March 2020. Retrieved 15 March 2020.
  13. ^ @msaludpy (7 March 2020). "URGENTE #Paraguay confirma primer caso de #COVID19" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
  14. ^ Romo, Rafael (7 March 2020). "Se confirma el primer caso de coronavirus en Paraguay". CNN (in Spanish). Retrieved 20 March 2020.
  15. ^ "Paraguay Says Suspends Public Schools for 15 Days Due to Coronavirus". The New York Times. Reuters. 10 March 2020. Retrieved 16 March 2020.
  16. ^ Inostroza, María Ignacia (11 March 2020). "En Paraguay: Suspenden clases y prohíben aglomeración de personas por 15 días". rockandpop.cl (in Spanish). Retrieved 20 March 2020.
  17. ^ "Paraguay suspende ingreso de vuelos provenientes de Europa". abc.com (in Spanish). 12 March 2020. Retrieved 16 March 2020.
  18. ^ "Coronavirus: Latin America imposes military roadblocks, curfews". Gulf News. 17 March 2020. Retrieved 20 March 2020.
  19. ^ "Paraguay Confirms First Death Due to Coronavirus: Health Ministry". NY Times. 20 March 2020. Retrieved 21 March 2020.
  20. ^ "Paraguay: Nationwide quarantine extended through April 19 /Update 4".
  21. ^ "Se realizaron 377 pruebas de COVID-19 y todas fueron negativas". ABC Color. 20 April 2020. Retrieved 5 May 2020.
  22. ^ https://www.worldaware.com/covid-19-alert-paraguay-extends-quarantine-measures-movement-restrictions-through-may-3
  23. ^ https://www.nytimes.com/reuters/2020/04/24/world/americas/24reuters-health-coronavirus-paraguay.html
  24. ^ a b "Staying during coronavirus - Paraguay travel advice". GOV.UK. Retrieved 12 June 2020. UKOpenGovernmentLicence.svg Text was copied from this source, which is available under an Open Government Licence v3.0. © Crown copyright.
  25. ^ "Cuarentena: Fase 3 inicia este lunes, no así en Paraguarí y Concepción - Nacionales - ABC Color". www.abc.com.py (in Spanish). Retrieved 15 June 2020.
  26. ^ a b "Resuelven que Alto Paraná vuelva a cuarentena casi total por 14 días - Nacionales - ABC Color". www.abc.com.py (in Spanish). Retrieved 30 July 2020.
  27. ^ "Asunción y Central seguirán en la fase 3 hasta el 30 de agosto". ultimahora.com (in Spanish). Retrieved 8 August 2020.
  28. ^ https://www.latinousa.org/2020/05/26/insideparaguayshelters/
  29. ^ Concierto de Chayanne se suspende y aún no tiene nueva fecha ABC, 11 March 2020
  30. ^ Postergan el Asunciónico 2020 por la pandemia del coronavirus HOY, 12 March 2020
  31. ^ https://www.abc.com.py/edicion-impresa/locales/2020/06/19/ninguno-de-los-9-casos-de-lambare-esta-relacionado-con-la-victima-fatal/
  32. ^ (Active local cases - Total local cases) - total recoveries: Recoveries in shelters
  33. ^ "MSPBS - Reporte COVID19".