Tag: Coronavirus

What are Connecticut’s travel advisory rules during the coronavirus pandemic?

If you’re traveling anytime soon, you probably have questions about Connecticut’s COVID-19 testing and quarantine protocols, what states they apply to, recent changes made in conjunction with New York and New Jersey, and more. Here’s where things stand right now.

What are the current rules?

Any traveler to Connecticut from a location on the state’s travel advisory list must self-quarantine for 14 days from the time of last contact within the identified state or country — or have a negative test for COVID-19.

To be exempt from the self-quarantine, a traveler must have had a negative test for COVID-19 in the 72 hours prior to arriving in Connecticut or at any time following arrival in the state.

Upon arrival, all travelers from states and territories on the state’s advisory must fill out a Travel Health Form and self-quarantine for 14 days or produce a negative COVID-19 test; failure to do so can lead to a $500 civil penalty. As of Oct. 1, Connecticut had issued 42 fines for COVID-19 travel advisory violations, totaling $44,800.

Who does this apply to?

Although changes have been proposed in recent weeks, Gov. Lamont’s guidelines remain in place for anyone traveling to Connecticut who has spent 24 hours or longer (within 14 days prior to arrival) in a location on the travel advisory list. (If you aren’t staying in Connecticut for more than 23 hours, you are off the hook.)

You do not have to self-quarantine if you tested negative for COVID-19. However, you have to self-quarantine until you get your negative test results, and also submit written proof of your negative test result to the Commissioner of Public Health at DPH.COVID-Travel@ct.gov. The only tests that are acceptable are nucleic acid tests — not rapid antigen tests nor antibody tests.

If you tested positive for COVID-19 within 90 days of arriving in Connecticut and have been asymptomatic for 10 days, you don’t have to self-quarantine, as long as you submit your test results in writing to the Commissioner of Public Health at DPH.COVID-Travel@ct.gov when you get here. (You still have to fill out a travel health form.)

What locations are currently on Connecticut’s travel advisory list?

A lot. The list is updated every Tuesday or sooner if the need arises. Right now, there are 40 states and territories on Connecticut’s travel advisory list, including Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Guam, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Puerto Rico, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, West Virginia, Wisconsin and Wyoming.

New York and New Jersey will not be added to the list, though officials have discouraged non-essential travel between states. Gov. Lamont said he’d like to enter into a similar agreement with Massachusetts and Rhode Island.

Let’s say you’re flying from California to Connecticut, with a short stopover in Chicago: you don’t have to self-quarantine when you get here (unless

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Major airline groups push for end to coronavirus quarantines, travel bans

By David Shepardson

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The United States, state governments and some foreign countries should replace quarantines and travel bans on airline passengers with COVID-19 testing of travelers before departure and upon arrival, airline and business groups said on Thursday.

They said the move would boost U.S. international air travel, which is down 78% year-over-year for the most recent seven-day period, according to airline industry data.

The groups, which include the International Air Transport Association, Airlines for America, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, airline unions and the U.S. Travel Association, called on the Trump administration, state governors and international partners “to pursue a risk-based and data-driven approach to COVID-19 testing which would obviate the need for quarantines and travel bans so that the travel network can be safely re-opened.”

The groups added that “travel quarantines are decimating our industry.”

Currently, 18 U.S. states have some type of quarantine for arriving travelers, the groups said. Hawaii last week began allowing airline passengers who tested negative for COVID-19 to avoid a two-week mandatory quarantine upon arrival.

The United States still has in place entry bans on nearly all non-U.S. citizens who recently were in China, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Brazil, Iran and countries in the so-called Schengen border-free area of Europe.

Nearly all of Europe still bans most U.S. travelers, while the UK allows Americans to visit but requires a two-week quarantine upon arrival.

“The continued restrictions on international travel and differing state and international quarantine policies are hampering the recovery of the U.S. economy,” the letter added.

The Trump administration has been holding high-level discussions with countries including the United Kingdom, Germany, Japan, Canada and Italy about the possibility of establishing “flight bubbles” that would allow travel or reduce quarantines if passengers agreed to COVID-19 tests before departure and upon arrival.

Under discussion are whether a quarantine would still be required, with some health experts in the Trump administration calling for a one-week quarantine, and what test would be used. Rising coronavirus infections in some countries, such as the United States, pose a hurdle to lifting restrictions.

(Reporting by David Shepardson; Editing by Cynthia Osterman)

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Indiana has been removed from Ohio’s latest coronavirus travel advisory map

COLUMBUS, Ohio – Indiana has been removed from Ohio’s latest travel advisory map that notes states from which people entering Ohio are recommended to self-quarantine for 14 days to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Ohio’s westerly neighbor’s coronavirus testing positivity rate has decreased in the past week to a daily average of 10%. States with 15% or higher positivity end up on Ohio’s map.

Ohio’s positivity rate on Wednesday was 5.2%, with a seven-day average at 4.9%.

The states with a rate of 15% or higher are:

-South Dakota, at 35.7%

-Idaho, at 29.5%

-Iowa, at 21.2%

-Kansas, at 19.4%

-Nebraska, at 19.2%

-Alabama, at 16.5%

-Utah, at 16.1%

Additionally, three states didn’t have testing data over multiple days. Those states — Mississippi, Wyoming and Nevada — are shaded gray. The health department notes that in recent weeks, they have had elevated positivity rates so travel should be reconsidered.

The advisory is for both leisure and business travel and for both Ohioans and out-of-state travelers. Gov. Mike DeWine said he was making exceptions for residents in Ohio’s border states who had to commute for work.

The state uses positivity rates from the COVID Tracking Project, which Johns Hopkins University also uses for its dashboard. As of Wednesday, the COVID Tracking Project was updating its processes for pulling data from individual states. Several states are also in midst of changing how they calculate and report their data. Even with these challenges, the COVID Tracking Project is still the most consistent and timely source of state-level testing information, the Department of Health said in a statement.

During a self-quarantine, people are advised to take their temperature with a thermometer twice a day. Monitor for fever, cough, difficulty breathing, fatigue, muscle or body aches, headache, loss of taste or smell, sore throat, congestion or runny nose, and nausea or vomiting or diarrhea. If symptoms develop, call a doctor.

Remain at home and avoid all in-person activities, including work, grocery stores and pharmacies, public events and public places. Do not leave home except for medical care. Do not allow visitors in your home.

Stay in a separate room if you live with others. If it’s not possible, wear a mask around them and stay at least six feet away.

Other coverage:

Ohio sets 3rd record in a week for new coronavirus cases — 2,366: Wednesday update

Indiana now on Ohio’s coronavirus travel advisory map, though self-quarantine exceptions allowed for workers who cross border

Ohio hospital officials eyeing coronavirus numbers, concerned about capacity with oncoming flu season

Ohio coronavirus cases increase by 2,015: Tuesday update

Ohio insurance plans on the Obamacare exchange to remain nearly flat in 2021

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At nearly 100 years old, Lord Baltimore hotel finds new life as city’s free coronavirus quarantine center

BALTIMORE — Around this time of year, the Lord Baltimore Hotel would usually be filled with guests: convention visitors, football fans and even ghost hunters seeking to commune with the spirits that they say haunt its corridors.

Today, the hotel’s ballroom has been converted into a COVID-19 command center. Beneath three grand chandeliers, city employees and workers from the University of Maryland Medical System take calls from coronavirus-positive residents who need a place to quarantine or health care facilities with patients, some of them homeless, who need a place to stay.

Across the globe, hotels are being used for isolating people suspected of having COVID-19. Travelers to Singapore, Australia and Taiwan head straight from the airport to inns and hotels for 14 days to prevent transmission of the virus. Sometimes, guests pay for part or all of the stay. But that’s not the case at the Lord Baltimore Hotel, which is now the city’s Triage, Respite, and Isolation (TRI) Center. Since May, more than 600 people have come through its doors, and all of them have stayed for free.

The project, which is a partnership between the city and the University of Maryland Medical System, is funded through the $103 million Baltimore received from the federal government in CARES Act funding. While those dollars expire in December, city officials plan to seek funding from FEMA to keep it open longer.

“Our commitment is to be here as long as it’s needed,” said Chuck Callahan of the University of Maryland Medical Center, who splits his time between the hotel and the convention center, which is also a testing facility and facility.

Among the guests are Leon Love, a 68-year-old Baltimore resident who stayed at the hotel last month. He tested positive for COVID-19 last month after attending the viewing of a friend; he noticed the inability to taste while he was eating bean soup. Rather than risk infecting his family, who he was living with, he checked in to the Lord Baltimore. He credits the good care he received there with helping him make a full recovery from the illness.

“Talk about not wanting to leave,” he said.

Early on in the pandemic, Baltimore leaders realized that people living in homeless shelters and other group settings would need a place to isolate if they tested positive for COVID-19 or were exposed to the virus. A motel set aside for that purpose quickly filled up to capacity. Organizers needed someplace bigger, centrally located — and better equipped to deal with sick people. So they approached the University of Maryland Medical System for help.

Callahan, vice president of population health at the University of Maryland Medical Center, said the medical system had approached the Lord Baltimore’s owners earlier in the pandemic to secure overflow beds should the hospital run out of room. But that ended up not happening; so it instead became a place for homeless and COVID-19-positive residents.

It’s not the first time the city has operated a quarantine facility. For centuries,

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Maryland Returns To No-Travel List, Coronavirus Cases Spike

ANNAPOLIS, MD — A recent spike in coronavirus infections returned Maryland to the quarantine order of three states on Tuesday. When travelers from Maryland head to Connecticut, New Jersey, or New York, they will have to self-isolate for 14 days.

Maryland’s placement on the the travel mandate comes as hospitalizations hit their highest rate in months. The state’s positivity rate is also climbing.

Why Is Maryland On The Quarantine Order?

This is Maryland’s third stint on the list, which was born on June 24. Travel from the state was previously restricted from July 21 to Aug. 25 and Sept. 9 to Sept. 15.

To land on the trio’s coronavirus quarantine mandate, states must have either:

  1. An average case rate of more than 10 new cases-per-100,000 residents per day over a rolling seven days.

  2. Or an average positivity rate of more than 10 percent over a rolling seven days.

Maryland’s case rate of 10.4 secured the state a spot on the travel advisory. As long as Maryland averages more than 604 coronavirus cases-per-day in a given week, it will remain on the list of troubled states.

The case rate maxed out at 18.03 on May 7 before plummeting to 5.6 on June 24. The lull didn’t last long, as the case rate hopped to a recent high of 15.55 on July 31. Another downswing dropped the case rate to 7.63 on Sept. 26, but it is already back up above 10.

(Story continues below graph)

How Do Maryland’s Coronavirus Statistics Look?

Maryland added 590 coronavirus cases on Tuesday, bringing its total to 136,744 infections. The state also reported nine more coronavirus-related deaths Tuesday. The virus has killed 3,904 Marylanders.

The state’s positivity rate has seen an uptick since it bottomed out at 2.51 percent on Sept. 24. The seven-day rolling average now sits at 3.2 percent. The weekly positivity rate topped out at 26.88 percent on April 17.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says jurisdictions should aim to keep their percent positivity below 5 percent. Maryland has been beneath that benchmark since June 25, but some counties play hopscotch with that threshold. Prince George’s County, for example, has a positivity rate of 5.06 percent.

Maryland’s hospitalizations have fluctuated in recent months. They hit an overall peak of 1,711 on April 30. After falling to a low of 385 on July 10, the number of hospitalized coronavirus patients spiked to 592 by Aug. 1.

Hospitalizations then marched down to a recent low of 290 on Sept. 21, but they are back on the rise. Maryland reported 464 coronavirus-related hospitalizations Tuesday. That’s the most since Aug. 19.

“State health officials continue to closely monitor trends in our critical health metrics,” Hogan tweeted Thursday. “We are all in this together, and we need each and every Marylander to do their part to help slow the spread and keep our communities safe.”

What States Are On The Quarantine Mandates?

Visitors who break the travel order face different consequences in each

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NY Discourages Travel From NJ As Coronavirus Infections Rise

NEW JERSEY — After New Jersey regressed in its management of the coronavirus pandemic, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo has discouraged travel between the two states. And they aren’t alone.

On Tuesday, Cuomo announced nonessential travel between New Jersey, Connecticut and Pennsylvania should be put on pause, but stopped short of including the states on New York’s travel advisory list despite the fact that the Garden State qualifies for it.

A placement on that list would mean travelers from the three states would need to quarantine for 14 days after arriving in New York, something Cuomo said was impractical. Such a move could have a tremendous economic impact on the two states since tens of thousands of commuters travel from the Garden State to New York every day.

A discussion is planned between Gov. Phil Murphy, Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont and Cuomo on Tuesday. The meeting is “about making it clear to the extent travel among the states or between the states is not essential, it should avoided,” and to discuss how New York officials can help manage outbreaks, Cuomo said.

New York, New Jersey and Connecticut all share the same travel advisory standards, which include:

  • An average daily number of cases higher than 10 per 100,000 over a seven-day period.

  • A positivity rate of 10 percent or higher over seven days.

New Jersey’s positivity rates are still below the 10 percent mark, but the state’s cases have reached more than 10 cases per 100,000 people, according to New York officials.

Lamont recently suggested a change to those standards, which would make it harder for states to qualify for the list. Cuomo didn’t address that proposal, however.

For now, at least, New Jersey will remain absent from the undesirable list, but an update is expected on interstate travel as soon as Wednesday. “And I’ll have more to say on that (Wednesday),” said Cuomo.

New Jersey has its own travel advisory and has also kept Pennsylvania and Connecticut off its list. The current number of states that are subject to quarantining is 38. Read more: NJ Expands Coronavirus Travel Quarantine List To Biggest Ever

This article originally appeared on the Ridgewood-Glen Rock Patch

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Quarantines won’t be enforced for travel to N.Y., Pa. and Ct. even though N.J. meets coronavirus criteria

New Jersey has not landed on its newest travel advisory for states even though it meets the criteria for a 14-day quarantine because of an uptick of coronavirus cases, officials said Tuesday.

New Jersey entered into the joint travel advisory with New York and Connecticut. But New York officials announced travel wouldn’t be restricted between Connecticut, New Jersey and Pennsylvania — all three of which meet the criteria as of Tuesday.

New York has not met the criteria.

Two states, meanwhile, were added to New Jersey’s travel advisory: Arizona and Maryland. There are currently 40 states on the list of the joint quarantine travel advisory with New York and Connecticut.

“Given interconnected nature of region a quarantine is not practically viable,” New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo spokeswoman Caitlin Girouard said in a tweet.

She added New York discourages non-essential travel.

New Jersey has met the criteria used for the last four months to put states on its joint quarantine travel advisory with New York and Connecticut. The advisory applies to any state or territory with a positive test rate higher than 10 per 100,000 residents or those with a 10% or higher positivity rate over a 7-day rolling average.

New Jersey’s seven-day rolling average hit 923 on Sunday, based on provisional numbers state health officials release each day. With the state’s 8.8 million population, anything over an average 888 new cases daily would push the state above the 10 cases per 100,000 threshold.

New York health officials, who collect the data and supply the list to all three states, use numbers from all 50 states’ COVID-19 data websites and check those against the COVID Tracking Project website, New York officials said. New Jersey met the criteria to be on the list on Sunday.

New Jersey reported 1,036 more positive tests and 13 additional deaths Tuesday, marking the third day in a row of more than 1,000 new cases.

Murphy has said he doesn’t think people should be traveling for leisure when he was asked about whether New York would put the Garden State on the travel advisory list.

“My takeaway is simple,” Murphy said Monday during his regular COVID-19 briefing. “My advice is to not travel, frankly.”

Cuomo, meanwhile, said early Tuesday afternoon he planned to speak with Murphy and Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont later in the day to discuss the increases in both states. But he insisted New York wouldn’t try to restrict travel to its state from New Jersey or Connecticut.

“There is no practical way to quarantine New York from New Jersey and Connecticut. There are just too many interchanges. There are just too many interconnections,” Cuomo said during a telephone news conference.

“It would have a disastrous effect on the economy,” he said. “We’re going to be working with Connecticut and New Jersey to see how we can help them with their spikes.”

CORONAVIRUS RESOURCES: Live map tracker | Newsletter | Homepage

Business travel has always been exempt from the quarantine advisory.

The quarantine, for New

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U.S. borders with Mexico and Canada to remain closed for non-essential travel as coronavirus infections rise

Washington — The United States’ borders with Mexico and Canada will remain closed for non-essential travel for another month as the country braces for what public health experts say will be a difficult winter battling the coronavirus pandemic.

Acting Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf said Monday that the three countries will extend travel restrictions through November 21 in an effort to mitigate the spread of the coronavirus.

“We are working closely with Mexico & Canada to identify safe criteria to ease the restrictions in the future & support our border communities,” Wolf tweeted.

Bill Blair, Canada’s minister of public safety and emergency preparedness, said the nation’s “decisions will continue to be baked on the best public health advice available to keep Canadians safe.”

Under the restrictions, a foreign national arriving in Canada from the U.S. must prove they are traveling for an essential purpose or are an immediate family member and are not showing symptoms of COVID-19. Travelers must also have a plan to quarantine for 14 days.

Those traveling to Mexico from the U.S. may also be denied entry if their trip is considered non-essential, including for tourism and recreational purposes.

The U.S. leads the world in coronavirus infections, with more than 8.2 million confirmed cases, according to Johns Hopkins University. Mexico, by contrast, has had more than 800,000 confirmed coronavirus cases, and Canada has had more than 204,000 infections.

Coronavirus cases continue to rise in more than 30 states, and public health experts are warning the U.S. will be in for a difficult fall and winter.

Dr. Scott Gottlieb, the former head of the Food and Drug Administration, told “Face the Nation” in an interview Sunday that the U.S. is heading toward the “most difficult phase of this epidemic.”

“I think the next three months are going to be very challenging. There’s really no backstop against the spread that we’re seeing,” he said.

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Corporate travel won’t recover for years following coronavirus

  • A new Bank of America analysis found that business trips produced $334 billion in revenue in 2019 and won’t rebound until “late 2023 or in 2024.”
  • Other experts like travel managers and airline executives don’t expect corporate travel to recover for years either.
  • One hotelier has essentially written off the potential return of corporate travel, going as far as to modify his hotels to appeal to leisure travelers rather than business travelers.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

The hotel industry brings in $170 billion annually, and half of that comes from just one sector: corporate travel.

However, new Bank of America research shows that business trips disappearing overnight could cost hotels somewhere between $8 billion and $23 billion this year.

Americans went on over 400 million business trips in 2019. Those business trips contributed $334 billion to the entire travel industry’s $1.1 trillion in revenue last year, according to Bank of America researchers. Then the coronavirus pandemic hit and left the travel industry reeling.

According to analysts, it could be years before the industry rebounds.

The Bank of America analysis found that 75% of companies expect to be back in the office by mid-2021, and 83% of business travelers expect to travel at some point in 2021. But others — like hoteliers, airline executives, and travel managers — don’t believe corporate travel will snap right back to normal.

Industry revenues, Bank of America estimated, won’t fully recover until “late 2023 or in 2024,” even though the bank also estimated business trips could resume as soon as six months from now. The timeline hinges on the creation of a vaccine.

Judy Emma, senior manager of global travel at Twitter, anticipates corporate travel resuming at some level within the year.

“We started off in March thinking, by September, we’ll be back,” Emma told Skift recently. “Now we’re looking into next year, maybe by the middle of next year.” Twitter currently has a global travel ban, and Emma told Skift that the company return to travel depends on a vaccine.

United Airlines CEO Scott Kirby echoed Emma’s sentiment. He does not expect air travel to spike until there is a vaccine, and he estimates that corporate travel will not return to pre-pandemic levels until 2024.

“We’re anxiously watching, for example, the occupancy rate of New York City skyscrapers,” Kirby said during the airline’s third quarter earnings call, according to The Points Guy. “When that number starts to go up, I think you’re going to see business travel start to rebound because there’s a reason to travel.”

New York City hotels that see a significant amount of corporate travel revenue seem to fall in line with Kirby’s assessment.

For instance, Amar Lalvani, CEO of the parent company behind The Standard boutique hotel chain, told the Financial Times that his Meatpacking District hotel would typically rake in half of its $100 million revenue from business travelers, but “that’s not happening now.”

Weekdays — which once saw a hotel constantly teeming with suits on

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TSA screens 1 million passengers in one day for first time since mid-March as travel picks up during coronavirus pandemic

Coronavirus is still in the air, but so are travelers.

The Transportation Security Administration screened more than 1 million passengers on Sunday, the first time passing the seven-digit mark since March 17, just five days after Tom Hanks and Rudy Gobert tested positive for coronavirus.

Between Monday and Sunday, 6.1 million passengers crossed through TSA checkpoints, the highest weekly volume since the pandemic began.

The TSA touted its health protocols in keeping passengers safe, including acrylic barriers and technologies that reduce or eliminate physical contact between passengers and officers.

“TSA has been diligent in our efforts to ensure checkpoints are clean, safe and healthy for frontline workers and airline passengers, implementing new protocols and deploying state-of-the-art technologies that improve security and reduce physical contact,” TSA Administrator David Pekoske said in a statement Monday.

While the TSA said its numbers are still “well below pre-pandemic levels,” the slow return to normalcy comes as coronavirus rates begin to spike again.

As of Monday, more than 8.1 million Americans have tested positive for coronavirus and almost 220,000 deaths reported so far.

Many airlines are still using their own health protocols, including mask usage and leaving seats open to help with social distancing.

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