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There are several topics associated with the Covid-19 pandemic. This topic is the main or primary topic on this subject. The easiest way to find all topics related to coronavirus is to invoke a “tag display”. Simply click on the “ covid-19 ” tag (white characters on black background) that you see displayed near the top left of this topic.

What are “tags”? In information systems, a tag is a term, a keyword, or a key phrase (metadata) assigned to a piece of information. Tags are generally chosen informally and personally by the item's originator. As used by the CL administrators, a tag provides a quick snapshot of the subject matter, or in some instances the name of a person, a company, or an event. Tags are always displayed using lower case letters. A topic may have an unlimited number of tags.

The administrators endeavor to tag all relevant topics with the “covid-19” tag. If you see that we missed one, please bring it to our attention.

Significant pandemic milestones:

  • February 21st: Likely transfer of coronavirus from a teacher (who had traveled to Europe)  to Panama's first coronavirus death victim (Norato González); Click Here
  • March 3rd: Resolution passed raising national alert level regarding coronavirus epidemic; Click Here
  • March 8th: First confirmed coronavirus death (Norato González) in Panama; Click Here
  • March 9th: First confirmed case of coronavirus in Panama; not the date of case arrival in Panama, but the date the coroniavirus link was confirmed; Click Here
  • March 12th: President Cortizo declares a a national state of emergency; Click Here
  • March 15th: Certain business hours regulated, elective surgeries and routine medical consults suspended; Click Here
  • March 15th: Several provinces invoke a "dry law" (banning sales of alcoholic beverages) and implementing curfews; Chiriqui Province included; Click Here
  • March 15th: Foreigners banned from entering Panama; Click Here
  • March 17th: Countrywide curfew (9:00PM to 5:00AM) mandated; Click Here
  • March 22nd: All commercial flights into and out of Panama suspended; Click Here
  • March 23rd: Countrywide curfew (5:00PM to 5:00AM) mandated; Click Here
  • March 25th: Countrywide quarantine with restricted mobility mandated; sales of alcoholic beverages banned; Click Here
  • May 11th: Effective date of lifting the ban on the sales of alcoholic beverages; Click Here
  • May 13th: The gradual reopening of certain categories of business; Click Here
  • May 18th: People are authorized to leave their homes to exercise outdoors, but on a short lease; Click Here
  • June 1st: Quarantine lifted, but a 7:00PM to 5:00AM curfew is in effect; Click Here
  • June 3rd: Hardware stores reopen with limited hours; Click Here
  • June 6th and June 8th: Curfew/mobility restrictions elevated for Panama, Panama Oeste, and Veragaus regions; Click Here and Click Here
  • July 25th: Full weekend quarantine (lockdown) re-implemented for Panama; Click Here
  • July 27th: More restrictive mobility constraints including gender restrictions re-implemented, including Chiriqui Province; Click Here and Click Here

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Moderator comment: This article is posted as an exception to CL policy.

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Europe extends   travel welcome mat to 15 countries but not US

corfu.jpg

The Greek Island of Corfu is open for business

Posted 01/07/2020

The European Union has reopened its borders on Wednesday to visitors from 15 countries, but  not to the U.S. where deaths from coronavirus continue to spiral  upward with the toll  nearing 128,000

The list of countries deemed safe enough to allow its residents to enter the EU does not include the United Kingdom, Russia, Brazil or the United States, where the daily death rate from coronavirus exceeds 1,000 for the first time since June 10. In Latin America

Canada Australia, New Zealand  China and Rwanda are on the invitation list, In Latin America, only Uruguay got the green light.

The United States is the country hardest hit by the pandemic, with more than 128,000 deaths from some 2.63 million infections, followed by Brazil (more than 59,000 deaths from more than 1.40 million cases). Over  half a million people  have died worldwide

American infectious disease expert Dr  Anthony Fauci said the United States could hit 100,000 cases a day if the current trend continues. Several states imposed 14 days of quarantine on travelers from other states.

The EU hopes that relaxing restrictions will give some oxygen to tourism, a sector that has been strangled by the ban on non-essential travel since mid-March.

On Wednesday, July 1, hoteliers and restaurateurs saw the return of the first tourists, especially on the islands of Greece, a country that recorded 200 deaths from coronavirus, but whose economy was severely resented by confinement measures.

Romanian Cojan Dragos was "the first tourist" in a Corfu hotel. "We have the entire hotel to ourselves," he told AFP. "It it is sad," he said, but g he hopes to see the arrival of other visitors.

Spain and Portugal reopened their land border, closed since March 16, when the Portuguese country decided to protect itself from the pandemic that was rampant in its neighbor. Portugal is one of the least affected countries in Europe by the pandemic and Spain one of the hardest hit.

 

https://www.newsroompanama.com/travel/europe-extends-travel-welcome-mat-to-15-countries-but-not-us-1

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Moderator comment: Below is an email received from the US Embassy in Panama City concerning humanitarian flights.

Quote
------ Original Message ------
To:
Sent: 7/2/2020 7:47:09 AM
Subject: Message for U.S. Citizens: U.S. Embassy Panama City, Panama (July 2, 2020)
 

Seal with blue background

 

Message for U.S. Citizens:  U.S. Embassy Panama City, Panama (July 2, 2020)

 

Location: Panama

 

Event: Planned Commercial Humanitarian Flights

 

The Embassy has identified two upcoming humanitarian flights with seats available.  The flights are operated by United Airlines (flight number UA2417) and are scheduled for July 10 and 17.  There are no additional confirmed flights with available seats at this time, so if you desire to return to the United States, it is important to book immediately.  Any traveler with the appropriate passport/visa to permit entry into the United States who wishes to depart Panama is eligible to purchase a ticket.  Travelers should carefully plan their onward travel as hotel options in Houston may be limited.  Once in the United States, all domestic travel arrangements are the sole responsibility of the traveler.

 

The Embassy is aware that the Government of Panama has approved in-bound flights from the United States to Panama to provide Panamanian citizens and other qualified travelers the opportunity to travel to Panama.  Questions about qualifications necessary and approval for passengers on these flights should be directed to the Embassy of Panama, in Washington, D.C.  Airlines operating these flights, such as Copa Airlines, may occasionally be able to offer seats on the out-bound flights to some passengers.  Please contact the airline offering these seats for sale directly about those flights.  The U.S. Embassy in Panama will continue announcing all flights approved by the Panamanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs as humanitarian flights to the United States.

 

NOTE – We encourage you to purchase your tickets as soon as possible to ensure you are able to return to the United States.  U.S. citizens who choose not to depart on these flights should prepare to remain in Panama indefinitely and shelter in place.   

 

 

The currently authorized, upcoming humanitarian flights are:

 

 

  •  July 9 Spirit Airlines (SOLD OUT), departing Panama City’s Tocumen International Airport at 2:00 p.m. for Fort Lauderdale, FL, to arrive at 6:00 p.m.
  • July 10 United Airlines, departing Panama City’s Tocumen International Airport at 12:30 p.m. for Houston, TX, to arrive at 4:39 p.m.
  • July 17 United Airlines, departing Panama City’s Tocumen International Airport at 12:30 p.m. for Houston, TX, to arrive at 4:39 p.m.

 

For additional information about these flights and to make reservations please contact the airlines directly.  These tickets will be available soon, if not already, and the Embassy encourages you to check Spirit’s and United’s websites regularly for updates.

 

 

Flights that appear to be sold out may have openings due to cancelations.  Continue checking directly with the airlines for any openings.

 

There are no guarantees for these flights or the space available.

 

The Embassy encourages interested U.S. citizens and LPRs to purchase early and forward your purchase confirmation email to the Embassy immediately at PanamaCityUSCitizen@state.gov so that we can assist you with the issuance of salvoconducto passes.

 

The Embassy will continue its efforts to identify and seek approval for future humanitarian flights to the United States as long citizens indicate the desire to evacuate. 

 

Messages to U.S. citizens with updates on repatriation flights are sent daily to citizens living in Panama while the Embassy is assisting with approved flights from Panama to the United States.  Messages providing updated COVID-19 case numbers and information about the measures taken to combat COVID-19 in Panama will now be sent once per week, unless there are significant changes requiring immediate updates.

 

Consult the Embassy’s website (https://pa.usembassy.gov/) for additional information on the situation in Panama and the Department of State’s COVID-19 crisis page on travel.state.gov for the latest information.

 

Assistance:   

 

U.S. Embassy Panama City, Panama 
Building 783, Demetrio Basilio Lakas Avenue 
Clayton, Panama 
+507 317-5000 
Panama-ACS@state.gov  
https://pa.usembassy.gov/  
 

 

State Department – Consular Affairs 
+1 (888)407-4747 or +1 (202)501-4444  

 

Enroll in Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive security updates.  

Follow us on Facebook and Twitter

 

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We in the Boquete area have been very fortunate during the COVID crisis but a wave of new cases appears to have begun. Per the MINSA site as/of Midnight, Friday July 3rd:

Bajo Boquete has one new case. Los Naranjos has added two more to make a total of three. Alto Boquete has added a new case. Planning on traveling to David? Take precaution as they have almost 300 active cases.

Bajo1.GIF

Bajo2.GIF

Alto.GIF

David.GIF

  • Upvote 1

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6 hours ago, OrangeHoof said:

We in the Boquete area have been very fortunate during the COVID crisis but a wave of new cases appears to have begun. Per the MINSA site as/of Midnight, Friday July 3rd:

Bajo Boquete has one new case. Los Naranjos has added two more to make a total of three. Alto Boquete has added a new case. Planning on traveling to David? Take precaution as they have almost 300 active cases.

Thank you for posting this information. I still am unable to get that information out of the Minsa website.

If you wouldn't mind, when there is a change then please post again.

Much appreciated.

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As of late Thursday, July 2nd, 2020 - 34,463 cases, 645 deaths, 15,945 recoveries. 133,449 Covid-19 tests administered to date.

minsa.jpg

Tocumen and Arraijan are jockeying for the dubious status of being the "hotspot" in Panama.

tocumen.jpg

Alto Boquete now reporting 15 confirmed cases, and Bajo Boquete remains at 3 cases. It appears now that Minsa records now incorporate the recent new case in Jaramillo.

alto boquete.jpg         Note: No graphic representation for Bajo Boquete available.

The "Chiriqui hotspot" of Nuevo Méjico/Divalá, which is just west of David, reporting 230 cases. Click Here for more information about Nuevo Méjico and Divalá.

divala.jpg            nuevo mexico.jpg

https://geosocial.maps.arcgis.com/apps/opsdashboard/index.html#/2c6e932c690d467b85375af52b614472

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Death toll rises convention centers marked for conversion to hospitals

amador.jpg

Posted 02/07/2020

July  opened with 913 new cases of Covid-19  raising  the total in Panama to 34,463 since the outbreak began on March 9 and 14 new deaths, brought  the total death toll to 645.

The Ministry of Health  reports that, 943 people remain hospitalized, 794 in the ward and 149 in Intensive Care.

There are 16,930 people in isolation, 16,251 at home and 679 in hospital hotels.

As  the availability of hospital beds shrinks  efforts are being made  to enable the Figali  and Amador Convention Centesr to be used if needed  and room  of the Social Security Fund and other hospitals are being expanded being expanded to install beds that for  COVID-positive patient

 

https://www.newsroompanama.com/health/death-toll-rises-convention-centers-marked-for-conversion-to-hospitals-1

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Panameños ignoran que podrían padecer factores de riesgo

Cifras del Minsa precisan que el 36% de las muertes por el virus tiene la edad como único factor de riesgo.
 
Ohigginis Arcia Jaramillo
02 jul 2020 - 11:05 PM

https://www.prensa.com/impresa/panorama/panamenos-ignoran-que-podrian-padecer-factores-de-riesgo/

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Moderator comment: Below is an email received from the US Embassy in Panama City concerning humanitarian flights.

Quote
------ Original Message ------
To:
Sent: 7/3/2020 11:07:35 AM
Subject: Message for U.S. Citizens: U.S. Embassy Panama City, Panama (July 3, 2020)
 

Seal with blue background

 

 

Message for U.S. Citizens:  U.S. Embassy Panama City, Panama (July 3, 2020)

 

Location: Panama

 

Event: Planned Commercial Humanitarian Flights

 

The Embassy has identified two upcoming humanitarian flights with seats available.  The flights are operated by United Airlines (flight number UA2417) and are scheduled for July 10 and 17.  There are no additional confirmed flights with available seats at this time, so if you desire to return to the United States, it is important to book immediately.  Any traveler with the appropriate passport/visa to permit entry into the United States who wishes to depart Panama is eligible to purchase a ticketTravelers should carefully plan their onward travel as hotel options in Houston may be limited.  Once in the United States, all domestic travel arrangements are the sole responsibility of the traveler.

 

The Embassy is aware that the Government of Panama has approved in-bound flights from the United States to Panama to provide Panamanian citizens and other qualified travelers the opportunity to travel to Panama.  Questions about qualifications necessary and approval for passengers on these flights should be directed to the Embassy of Panama, in Washington, D.C.  Airlines operating these flights, such as Copa Airlines, may occasionally be able to offer seats on the out-bound flights to some passengers.  Please contact the airline offering these seats for sale directly about those flights.  The U.S. Embassy in Panama will continue announcing all flights approved by the Panamanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs as humanitarian flights to the United States.

 

NOTE – We encourage you to purchase your tickets as soon as possible to ensure you are able to return to the United States.  U.S. citizens who choose not to depart on these flights should prepare to remain in Panama indefinitely and shelter in place.   

 

 

The currently authorized, upcoming humanitarian flights are:

 

 

  •  July 9 Spirit Airlines (SOLD OUT), departing Panama City’s Tocumen International Airport at 2:00 p.m. for Fort Lauderdale, FL, to arrive at 6:00 p.m.
  • July 10 United Airlines, departing Panama City’s Tocumen International Airport at 12:30 p.m. for Houston, TX, to arrive at 4:39 p.m.
  • July 17 United Airlines, departing Panama City’s Tocumen International Airport at 12:30 p.m. for Houston, TX, to arrive at 4:39 p.m.

 

For additional information about these flights and to make reservations please contact the airlines directly.  These tickets will be available soon, if not already, and the Embassy encourages you to check Spirit’s and United’s websites regularly for updates.

 

 

Flights that appear to be sold out may have openings due to cancelations.  Continue checking directly with the airlines for any openings.

 

There are no guarantees for these flights or the space available.

 

The Embassy encourages interested U.S. citizens and LPRs to purchase early and forward your purchase confirmation email to the Embassy immediately at PanamaCityUSCitizen@state.gov so that we can assist you with the issuance of salvoconducto passes.

 

The Embassy will continue its efforts to identify and seek approval for future humanitarian flights to the United States as long citizens indicate the desire to evacuate. 

 

Messages to U.S. citizens with updates on repatriation flights are sent daily to citizens living in Panama while the Embassy is assisting with approved flights from Panama to the United States.  Messages providing updated COVID-19 case numbers and information about the measures taken to combat COVID-19 in Panama will now be sent once per week, unless there are significant changes requiring immediate updates.

 

Consult the Embassy’s website (https://pa.usembassy.gov/) for additional information on the situation in Panama and the Department of State’s COVID-19 crisis page on travel.state.gov for the latest information.

 

Assistance:   

 

U.S. Embassy Panama City, Panama 
Building 783, Demetrio Basilio Lakas Avenue 
Clayton, Panama 
+507 317-5000 
Panama-ACS@state.gov  
https://pa.usembassy.gov/  
 

 

State Department – Consular Affairs 
+1 (888)407-4747 or +1 (202)501-4444  

 

Enroll in Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive security updates.  

Follow us on Facebook and Twitter

 

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Moderator comment: Below is an email received from the US Embassy in Panama City.

Quote
------ Original Message ------
To:
Sent: 7/3/2020 11:16:47 AM
Subject: Health Alert: U.S. Embassy Panama City, Panama (July 3, 2020)
 

Seal with blue background

 

Health Alert:  U.S. Embassy Panama City, Panama (July 3, 2020)

  

Event:  COVID-19 Situation Report and Reminders

 

On July 2, Panama’s Ministry of Health (MINSA) confirmed 35,237 cases of COVID-19.

 

On June 30, MINSA announced that in the provinces of Panama and Panama Oeste, the weekend curfew from 5:00 pm on Saturday until 5:00 am on Monday will continue through the month of July.

 

On June 17, the Government of Panama extended the suspension of international commercial passenger flights for an additional 30 days through July 22.  The previous exceptions for cargo, humanitarian, medical supplies, medical evacuation, and vaccines remain in place.

 

On June 7, MINSA published a resolution regarding movement restrictions in the provinces of Panama and Panama Oeste.  These provinces returned to movement restrictions based on gender and ID number beginning June 8.  Gender restrictions allow for movements as follows:

 

·       Women:  Monday, Wednesday, and Friday

·       Men:  Tuesday and Thursday.  Saturday until 5:00 pm

 

Additionally, movement are restricted to a two-hour window based on the last digit of each individual’s cedula number or passport number if an individual is not a citizen of Panama.  U.S. Citizens in Panama should always carry their passports, and their Panamanian cedula if they have one.  The two-hour windows are as follows:

 

·       Last number is 7 – 6:30 – 8:30 am

·       Last number is 8 – 7:30 – 9:30 am

·       Last number is 9 – 8:30 – 10:30 am

·       Last number is 0 – 9:30 – 11:30 am

·       Last number is 1 – 12:30 – 2:30 pm

·       Last number is 2 – 1:30 – 3:30 pm

·       Last number is 3 – 2:30 – 4:30 pm

·       Last number is 4 – 3:30 – 5:30 pm

·       Last number is 5 – 4:30 – 6:30 pm

·       Last number is 6 – 5:30 – 7:30 pm

 

 

There is a special window for those over 60 years old, regardless of cedula or passport numbers, between 7:00 am and 10:00 am (gender restrictions still apply).

 

In Panama and Panama Oeste provinces, the weekend curfew for the month of July is from 5:00 pm on Saturday until 5:00 am on Monday.

 

Normal exceptions apply for holders of permission letters (salvoconductos).

  

Parents may take one child per family outside near their home or in the social areas of their apartment building during the two-hour window of the accompanying parent.

 

Hours of circulation during the total quarantine are intended only for essential purchases by one person per household.   The Embassy reminds U.S. citizens in Panama that it is always obligatory to comply with local laws.  Other provinces in Panama will continue with the curfew that began on June 1 (see details below). 

 

MINSA reminds citizens and residents of Panama that staying at home, not touching your face, and washing your hands frequently are the best means of prevention against COVID-19.  It also requires the use of masks, even homemade ones, when in public.

 

The Embassy encourages everyone to prepare accordingly.  Take the opportunity to stock up on any medicines and food supplies you may need to shelter in place in your homes for an extended period of time.

 

On June 11, MINSA announced that a health cordon has been declared in the community of Iber-Gun, in the township of Cristobal, Colon Province.  Health cordons were also announced on June 4 for the communities of Pantanal and Finca 1 in Changuinola, and Solución in Bocas del Toro.

 

Effective June 8, Panama’s National Immigration Service opened and started a 90-day period during which foreigners may submit applications to maintain or adjust their immigration status in Panama without incurring fines.  This applies to applicants whose immigration status expired between March 13 and June 7.  For more details see www.migración.gob.pa.

 

On June 2, 2020, MINSA published a resolution stating that anyone leaving their residence must be wearing a mask that covers their nose and mouth.  Any individual not wearing a mask is subject to possible detention and fine.

 

Starting June 1, the Government of Panama ended the quarantine with movement restrictions based on ID number and gender.  This change remains in effect for all provinces except Panama and Panama Oeste.  For all other provinces, the quarantine and two-hour movement windows were replaced by a curfew from 7:00 pm to 5:00 am, Monday through Sunday.  Children are also free to move about from 4:00 pm to 7:00 pm, accompanied by a parent, guardian, or caretaker.  The use of masks and social distancing are still required.  This new flexibility does not permit social group activities, cultural events, festivals, visits to the beach, contact sports, or any other activity that violates social distancing.  The Government of Panama still maintains security checkpoints on the roads and prohibits most interprovincial travel. 

  

Also on June 1, the second economic block opened.  The sectors included in that block are public construction, mining of non-metals, and industry.  Religious sites, parks, social areas, and sporting areas are also allowed to operate at 25 percent capacity.  For more details about the Government of Panama’s plan to gradually reopen the economy, visit the Embassy’s COVID-19 information page (see link below).  The Government of Panama will evaluate every two weeks, but the date for opening additional business blocks remains unknown.

 

On April 21, the Municipal Council of the City of Panama passed a new decree stating that anyone leaving their residence must be wearing a mask that covers their nose and mouth.  Panamanian National Police and Municipal Police will enforce the decree which extends throughout the metropolitan area of Panama City.

  

On March 26, Panama announced the nationwide suspension of commercial passenger and domestic charter flights, in addition to the ban on international commercial passenger flights.  There are exceptions for cargo, humanitarian, medical supplies, medical evacuation, and vaccines.

 

On March 19, the U.S. Department of State issued a Global Level 4 Health Advisory, advising U.S. citizens to avoid all international travel due to the global impact of COVID-19.   In countries where commercial departure options remain available, U.S. citizens who live in the United States should arrange for immediate return to the United States, unless they are prepared to remain abroad for an indefinite period.

 

The Embassy is working on evacuation options via commercial humanitarian and military flights for those U.S. Citizens wishing to depart Panama.  Please express your interest in consideration for potential evacuation flights by emailing:  PanamaCityUSCitizen@state.gov.

 

On March 17, U.S. Embassy Panama suspended routine consular services.  For emergency American Citizens Services, including emergency passports, please visit our website for additional information.

 

On March 14, the Department of State authorized the departure from any diplomatic or consular post in the world of U.S. personnel and family members who have been medically determined to be at higher risk of a poor outcome if exposed to COVID-19.

 

In response to the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak, the Peace Corps has reduced/evacuated all Volunteers from Panama.

 

The Government of Panama has implemented enhanced quarantine measures to reduce the spread of COVID-19.  Travelers should be prepared for further travel restrictions to be put into effect with little or no advance notice.  Visit the website of the Panamanian Ministry of Health (in Spanish) for the most up to date information on these measures.

 

Schools and universities are closed nation-wide.  Sporting events, festivals, and all gatherings larger than 50 people have been banned.  Visit the local government COVID-19 website for updated information.

 

The Department of State has issued a Global Level 4 Health Advisory for COVID-19.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued a Level 3 Global COVID-19 Outbreak Notice.

 

U.S. government personnel are restricted from non-essential domestic and international travel.

 

Messages to U.S. citizens with updates on repatriation flights are sent daily to citizens living in Panama while the Embassy is assisting with approved flights from Panama to the United States.  Messages providing updated COVID-19 case numbers and information about the measures taken to combat COVID-19 in Panama will now be sent once per week, unless there are significant changes requiring immediate updates.

 

Actions to Take:

 

·       Consult the CDC website for the most up-to-date information.

·       For the most recent information on what you can do to reduce your risk of contracting COVID-19, please see the CDC’s latest recommendations.

·       Visit the COVID-19 crisis page on travel.state.gov for the latest information.

·       Visit our Embassy webpage on COVID-19 for information on conditions in Panama.

·       Visit the Department of Homeland Security’s website on the latest travel restrictions to the United States.

 

Assistance:

 

U.S. Embassy Panama City, Panama
Building 783, Demetrio Basilio Lakas Avenue
Clayton, Panama
+507 317-5000
Panama-ACS@state.gov

https://pa.usembassy.gov/
 

State Department – Consular Affairs
+1 (888)407-4747 or +1 (202)501-4444

 

Enroll in Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive security updates.

 

Follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

 

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As of late Friday, July 3rd, 2020 - 35,237 cases, 667 deaths, 16,445 recoveries. 135,801 Covid-19 tests administered to date.

minsa.jpg

Tocumen and Arraijan are jockeying for the dubious status of being the "hotspot" in Panama.

tocumen.jpg

Alto Boquete now reporting 15 confirmed cases, and Bajo Boquete remains at 4 cases. It appears now that Minsa records now incorporate the recent new case in Jaramillo.

alto boqute.jpg         Note: No graphic representation for Bajo Boquete available.

The "Chiriqui hotspot" of Nuevo Méjico/Divalá, which is just west of David, reporting 231 cases. Click Here for more information about Nuevo Méjico and Divalá.

divala.jpg            nuevo mexico.jpg

https://geosocial.maps.arcgis.com/apps/opsdashboard/index.html#/2c6e932c690d467b85375af52b614472

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Search for healthcare staff as COVID death toll reaches 667

deaths-3.jpg

Posted 03/07/2020

Twenty-two deaths in one day raised the Panama toll to  667 on Wednesday, July 2,  and on a path to pass the 1.000 mark by month-end with 774 new positive cases diagnosed as hospitals struggle to cope with the surge in admissions.

Panama recorded a new record for deaths from COVID-19, with 22 confirmed in the last 24 hours. The total number of infections is now at .35,237 accumulated infections. and, 16,445 patients have recovered. On Wednesday  2,352 tests were applied,with a positivity percentage of 33%.

There are 17,181 people in isolation, (16,508 at home and 673 in hotels, and  944,  are hospitalized including 149 in intensive care.

The Ministry of Health (MINSA) is working on recruitment drive for healthcare staff and on the adaptation of wards in the network of public hospitals for COVID-19 patients.

Public network hospitals are being managed through the Interhospital Control Center to achieve more effective performance. The center monitors beds, medications, equipment, and other supplies, to respond to the needs of each person who is affected by the pandemic and other diseases.

 

https://www.newsroompanama.com/health/search-for-healthcare-staff-as-covid-death-toll-reaches-667

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Moratorium on credits: Law Enacted in Panama

A law was published in the Official Journal establishing a moratorium on loans granted by banks, cooperatives and finance companies, both public and private, until December 31, 2020, for natural and legal persons affected by the pandemic.

Thursday, July 2, 2020

The law promulgated on July 1 in the Official Journal, states that the benefits of the moratorium will be available to persons whose employment contract has been suspended or terminated, independent workers and traders whose activity has been affected by the health measures applied by covid-19.

You may be interested in "Financial Services: Business Potential in Central America"

The new law indicates that in order to accredit the state of incapacity or insolvency for the payment of commitments, the affected natural or legal persons or independents must present to the bank, finance company or cooperatives a sworn declaration on simple paper or before a notary public, in which they state the affectation of their income, or a letter of dismissal, suspension of the work contract or reduction of the work day, for employees in the public or private sector, a presidential statement is required.

"The law states that banks, cooperatives and financial institutions may not make collections, increase applied interest rates, surcharges or any other interest due to non-payment, late payment or for any other reason on the indicated loans which are subject to a moratorium. The Superintendency of Banks of Panama, the Panamanian Autonomous Cooperative Institute, the Ministry of Commerce and Industries will be obliged to ensure strict compliance and will apply the established sanctions," the document explains.

While the declaration of national emergency lasts and until seventy days after it is lifted, people's credit histories, which are registered by the Panamanian Credit Association, will not be affected.

See full publication in the Official Journal (in Spanish).

 

https://www.centralamericadata.com/en/article/main/Moratorium_on_credits_Law_Enacted_in_Panama

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Moderator comment: Below is an email received from the US Embassy in Panama City concerning humanitarian flights.

Quote
------ Original Message ------
To:
Sent: 7/4/2020 9:46:15 AM
Subject: Message for U.S. Citizens: U.S. Embassy Panama City, Panama (July 4, 2020)
 

Seal with blue background

 

Message for U.S. Citizens:  U.S. Embassy Panama City, Panama (July 4, 2020)

 

Location: Panama

 

Event: Planned Commercial Humanitarian Flights

 

The Embassy has identified six upcoming humanitarian flights with seats available.  The flights are operated by Copa Airlines (flights numbers CM4983 and CM4982), United Airlines (flight number UA2417), and Spirit Airlines (flight number NK6511).  The flights are scheduled for July 8, 10, 14, 15, 17, and 20.  There are no additional confirmed flights with available seats at this time, so if you desire to return to the United States, it is important to book immediately.  Any traveler with the appropriate passport/visa to permit entry into the United States who wishes to depart Panama is eligible to purchase a ticket.  Travelers should carefully plan their onward travel as hotel options in Dulles, Houston, and Ft. Lauderdale may be limited.  Once in the United States, all domestic travel arrangements are the sole responsibility of the traveler.

 

The Embassy is aware that the Government of Panama has approved in-bound flights from the United States to Panama to provide Panamanian citizens and other qualified travelers the opportunity to travel to Panama.  Questions about qualifications necessary and approval for passengers on these flights should be directed to the Embassy of Panama, in Washington, D.C.  Airlines operating these flights, such as Copa Airlines, may occasionally be able to offer seats on the out-bound flights to some passengers.  Please contact the airline offering these seats for sale directly about those flights.  The U.S. Embassy in Panama will continue announcing all flights approved by the Panamanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs as humanitarian flights to the United States.

 

NOTE – We encourage you to purchase your tickets as soon as possible to ensure you are able to return to the United States.  U.S. citizens who choose not to depart on these flights should prepare to remain in Panama indefinitely and shelter in place.   

 

 

The currently authorized, upcoming humanitarian flights are:

  • July 8 Copa Airlines, departing Panama City’s Tocumen International Airport at 9:00 a.m. for Dulles, VA.
  • July 9 Spirit Airlines (SOLD OUT), departing Panama City’s Tocumen International Airport at 2:00 p.m. for Fort Lauderdale, FL.
  • July 10 United Airlines, departing Panama City’s Tocumen International Airport at 12:30 p.m. for Houston, TX.
  • July 14 Spirit Airlines, departing Panama City’s Tocumen International Airport at 2:00 p.m. for Fort Lauderdale, FL.
  • July 15 Copa Airlines, departing Panama City’s Tocumen International Airport at 9:00 a.m. for Dulles, VA.
  • July 17 United Airlines, departing Panama City’s Tocumen International Airport at 12:30 p.m. for Houston, TX.
  • July 20 Spirit Airlines, departing Panama City’s Tocumen International Airport at 2:00 p.m. for Fort Lauderdale, FL.

 

For additional information about these flights and to make reservations please contact the airlines directly.  These tickets will be available soon, if not already, and the Embassy encourages you to check Copa’s, Spirit’s, and United’s websites regularly for updates.

 

 

Flights that appear to be sold out may have openings due to cancelations.  Continue checking directly with the airlines for any openings.

 

There are no guarantees for these flights or the space available.

 

The Embassy encourages interested U.S. citizens and LPRs to purchase early and forward your purchase confirmation email to the Embassy immediately at PanamaCityUSCitizen@state.gov so that we can assist you with the issuance of salvoconducto passes.

 

The Embassy will continue its efforts to identify and seek approval for future humanitarian flights to the United States as long citizens indicate the desire to evacuate. 

 

Messages to U.S. citizens with updates on repatriation flights are sent daily to citizens living in Panama while the Embassy is assisting with approved flights from Panama to the United States.  Messages providing updated COVID-19 case numbers and information about the measures taken to combat COVID-19 in Panama will now be sent once per week, unless there are significant changes requiring immediate updates.

 

Consult the Embassy’s website (https://pa.usembassy.gov/) for additional information on the situation in Panama and the Department of State’s COVID-19 crisis page on travel.state.gov for the latest information.

 

Assistance:   

 

U.S. Embassy Panama City, Panama 
Building 783, Demetrio Basilio Lakas Avenue 
Clayton, Panama 
+507 317-5000 
Panama-ACS@state.gov  
https://pa.usembassy.gov/  
 

 

State Department – Consular Affairs 
+1 (888)407-4747 or +1 (202)501-4444  

 

Enroll in Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive security updates.  

Follow us on Facebook and Twitter

 

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As of late Saturday, July 4th, 2020 - 35,995 cases, 698 deaths, 16,045 recoveries. 138,081 Covid-19 tests administered to date.

minsa.jpg

Tocumen and Arraijan are jockeying for the dubious status of being the "hotspot" in Panama. The numbers keep going up daily.

tocumen.jpg

Alto Boquete now reporting 15 confirmed cases, and Bajo Boquete remains at 4 cases.

alto boquete.jpg         Note: No graphic representation for Bajo Boquete available.

The "Chiriqui hotspot" of Nuevo Méjico/Divalá, which is just west of David, reporting 231 cases. Click Here for more information about Nuevo Méjico and Divalá.

divala.jpg             nuevo mexico.jpg

https://geosocial.maps.arcgis.com/apps/opsdashboard/index.html#/2c6e932c690d467b85375af52b614472

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COVID: 4,309  new cases , 94 deaths in 5 days

uci-june-17.jpg

Posted 04/07/2020

Panama recorded its highest daily death toll from  the coronavirus on Friday  July 3, bringing the total in the past five days to 94 with 4,309 new cases.

On Monday, June 29, there were  1,099 new cases and until Friday the daily figure, provided by the Ministry of Health (Minsa), did not drop below 700 cases.

The total number of recorded cases since the virus first struck the country  in March is 35,995

 

https://www.newsroompanama.com/health/covid-4309-new-cases-94-deaths-in-5-days-1

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 Early restart of flights from Panama in the clouds

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Pandemic created forced landings for airline industry

Posted 04/07/2020

Don’t expect to see commercial airlines from 89 destinations arriving in or leaving  Panama anytime soon.

 The International Air Transport Association (IATA) recommends that Latin American countries reactivate domestic flights as the first step to start the recovery of the airline industry in the region, which this year is estimated to lose some $18 billion as a result of the pandemic and that has forced companies, such as Avianca and Latam, to seek bankruptcy protection.

In Panama, there are only two players offering air connections between the capital city and the rest of the country: Air Panama and Copa Airlines.

Air Panama has air connections to Bocas del Toro, Chiriquí and the Guna Yala archipelago, and Copa Airlines only operates the Tocumen-David route. 

In normal times passengers can travel directly to 89 destinations worldwide, without counting flights with stopovers, such as the one offered by Air China.

Like international flights, local connections have been suspended since March 23 and the tentative date to resume operations in both cases is from July 23;   if the number of positive cases with the virus allows it. 

On Monday, July 6, personnel from the Ministry of Health will join the air reopening commission of  the Civil Aeronautical Authority (AAC) The committee discusses health protocols that flights must comply with.

"Once the Minsa approves the sanitary measures to be implemented at airports nationwide, the possibility of starting with local flights will be studied," said an AAC spokesperson. 

Every 15 days they hold meetings with the regional office of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) to analyze the implementation and updating of the protocols that passengers must comply with when entering air terminals and on  board planes.

In accordance with the economic opening program set by the Government, hotels, restaurants and air terminals may open when block four is enabled, but with the upturn in positive cases of Covid-19, in recent weeks, block 3 has been delayed.

However, President Laurentino Cortizo has said that there may be variations in the opening schedules of each block

The arrival of the coronavirus not only caused a forced landing of commercial aviation in the country; It has also disrupted new projects that seek to improve air connectivity between national airports.

 

https://www.newsroompanama.com/travel/early-restart-of-flights-from-panama-in-the-clouds

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Government seeking over 500 to join healthcare task force

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Posted 04/07/2020

The Panama Government is actively  looking for at least 500  frontline healthcare  professionals, including doctors, nurses, laboratory workers, technicians, cleaners and personnel to administer tests across the country, to face the growing  Covid-19 pandemic

Eyra Ruiz, Minister Counselor for Health and Technical Secretary of the Advisory Health Council, said Saturday that to date the Ministry of Health and the Social Security Fund have hired about 1,000 people and are still looking for  at least another 500, to integrate them into the system.

“We are going to hire more personnel to look for the contacts of those infected and make swabs in the communities. We also look for hospitals, as internists and intensivists, respiratory therapists, nurses and nursing technicians, ”Ruiz said

Domingo Moreno, a coordinator of the National Negotiating Commission, described the figure of 500 seats as “insufficient”, if it is taken into account that more than 1,000 new hospital beds will be enabled in the Amador, Atlapa and Figali convention centers.

The increase in cases of Covid-19 disease in recent weeks, the urgency to expand the installed capacity of beds and the depletion of health personnel, led the Government to make an urgent call for new appointments.

Health Minister, Luis Francisco Sucre, has already said that work is being done on the call and on the adaptation of various rooms in the network of public hospitals for the care of patients with the Covid- 19.

"We are not going to allow people to die for lack of personnel," he said

in the Figali and Amador convention centers, in Ancón, as well as in Atlanta, in San Francisco, the idea of the Health authorities is to enable 1,156 beds: 160 in Figali, 200 in Atlapa and 796 in Amador.

The CSS will also enable another 100 beds in its Training and Recreation Center in Las Cumbres, and in this same district it will prepare another 90 beds in a hotel, which will have medical and nursing care.

Ruiz said that, since the pandemic began last March, they have hired 1,000 health professionals, but many more are needed to detect cases in the communities (swabs), and doctors and nurses to care for patients in hospitals.

"The Advisory Council made a proposal on the urgency of 200 more doctors and nurses, but with the other health personnel required, it would reach 500 in total, also including specialists, such as pulmonologists and respiratory therapists," he added.

Mild and moderate patients would arrive at the convention centers, while the most serious would be in hospitals.

“The strategy against Covid-19 involves three arms: the first is to maintain installed capacity in hospitals; Then there is the traceability of new cases in the communities, and also supply food to the neediest population” said Ruiz "

Ruiz sent a message to the citizens: we are in an advanced phase of the pandemic, where all efforts are made to block transmission, but the population must cooperate. The government is doing its job, but people must do their part.

 

https://www.newsroompanama.com/health/government-seeking-over-500-to-join-healthcare-task-force

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Moderator comment: Another case of poor proofreading. Be cautious (skeptical?) about the dates mentioned in this news article.

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Mask and quarantine flouters seized

arrests.png

Posted 04/07/2020

At least 12 people were brought before a justice of the peace in  Diciembre  24, for flouting the decrees on the use of a mask  As COVID cases and deaths surge The government warned on Friday, July 3 that it would toughen enforcement, including confining people who roamed the streets after testing positive, who could be confined in hospital hotels and lose the benefit of special payments through their ID cards.

Personnel from various security levels and the Ministry of Health (Minsa) participated in the operation where businesses were verified on the spot. In addition, they sought to identify people infected with COVID-19 who must be quarantined.

The operation was also carried out in Panama Oeste and Colón Another 318 people were detained for flouting curfew rules.

 

https://www.newsroompanama.com/news/mask-and-quarantine-flouters-seized

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Moderator comment: Below is an email received from the US Embassy in Panama City concerning humanitarian flights.

Quote
------ Original Message ------
To:
Sent: 7/5/2020 9:00:14 AM
Subject: Message for U.S. Citizens: U.S. Embassy Panama City, Panama (July 5, 2020)
 

Seal with blue background

 

Message for U.S. Citizens:  U.S. Embassy Panama City, Panama (July 5, 2020)

 

Location: Panama

 

Event: Planned Commercial Humanitarian Flights

 

The Embassy has identified six upcoming humanitarian flights with seats available.  The flights are operated by Copa Airlines (flights numbers CM4983 and CM4982), United Airlines (flight number UA2417), and Spirit Airlines (flight number NK6511).  The flights are scheduled for July 8, 10, 14, 15, 17, and 20.  There are no additional confirmed flights with available seats at this time, so if you desire to return to the United States, it is important to book immediately.  Any traveler with the appropriate passport/visa to permit entry into the United States who wishes to depart Panama is eligible to purchase a ticket.  Travelers should carefully plan their onward travel as hotel options in Dulles, Houston, and Ft. Lauderdale may be limited.  Once in the United States, all domestic travel arrangements are the sole responsibility of the traveler.

 

The Embassy is aware that the Government of Panama has approved in-bound flights from the United States to Panama to provide Panamanian citizens and other qualified travelers the opportunity to travel to Panama.  Questions about qualifications necessary and approval for passengers on these flights should be directed to the Embassy of Panama, in Washington, D.C.  Airlines operating these flights, such as Copa Airlines, may occasionally be able to offer seats on the out-bound flights to some passengers.  Please contact the airline offering these seats for sale directly about those flights.  The U.S. Embassy in Panama will continue announcing all flights approved by the Panamanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs as humanitarian flights to the United States.

 

NOTE – We encourage you to purchase your tickets as soon as possible to ensure you are able to return to the United States.  U.S. citizens who choose not to depart on these flights should prepare to remain in Panama indefinitely and shelter in place.   

 

 

The currently authorized, upcoming humanitarian flights are:

  • July 8 Copa Airlines, departing Panama City’s Tocumen International Airport at 9:00 a.m. for Dulles, VA.
  • July 9 Spirit Airlines (SOLD OUT), departing Panama City’s Tocumen International Airport at 2:00 p.m. for Fort Lauderdale, FL.
  • July 10 United Airlines, departing Panama City’s Tocumen International Airport at 12:30 p.m. for Houston, TX.
  • July 14 Spirit Airlines, departing Panama City’s Tocumen International Airport at 2:00 p.m. for Fort Lauderdale, FL.
  • July 15 Copa Airlines, departing Panama City’s Tocumen International Airport at 9:00 a.m. for Dulles, VA.
  • July 17 United Airlines, departing Panama City’s Tocumen International Airport at 12:30 p.m. for Houston, TX.
  • July 20 Spirit Airlines, departing Panama City’s Tocumen International Airport at 2:00 p.m. for Fort Lauderdale, FL.

 

For additional information about these flights and to make reservations please contact the airlines directly.  These tickets will be available soon, if not already, and the Embassy encourages you to check Copa’s, Spirit’s, and United’s websites regularly for updates.

 

 

Flights that appear to be sold out may have openings due to cancelations.  Continue checking directly with the airlines for any openings.

 

There are no guarantees for these flights or the space available.

 

The Embassy encourages interested U.S. citizens and LPRs to purchase early and forward your purchase confirmation email to the Embassy immediately at PanamaCityUSCitizen@state.gov so that we can assist you with the issuance of salvoconducto passes.

 

The Embassy will continue its efforts to identify and seek approval for future humanitarian flights to the United States as long citizens indicate the desire to evacuate. 

 

Messages to U.S. citizens with updates on repatriation flights are sent daily to citizens living in Panama while the Embassy is assisting with approved flights from Panama to the United States.  Messages providing updated COVID-19 case numbers and information about the measures taken to combat COVID-19 in Panama will now be sent once per week, unless there are significant changes requiring immediate updates.

 

Consult the Embassy’s website (https://pa.usembassy.gov/) for additional information on the situation in Panama and the Department of State’s COVID-19 crisis page on travel.state.gov for the latest information.

 

Assistance:   

 

U.S. Embassy Panama City, Panama 
Building 783, Demetrio Basilio Lakas Avenue 
Clayton, Panama 
+507 317-5000 
Panama-ACS@state.gov  
https://pa.usembassy.gov/  
 

 

State Department – Consular Affairs 
+1 (888)407-4747 or +1 (202)501-4444  

 

Enroll in Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive security updates.  

Follow us on Facebook and Twitter

 

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Official numbers of interest from the MINSA website as of Sunday evening, July 5th, at 6 p.m.:

Bajo Boquete has added two new cases since my last post and Los Naranjos has added one. Alto Boquete is unchanged.

Volcan appears to have added some new cases while David is now past 300 active cases and heading toward 350.

Our friends in Puerto Armuelles seem to be in another growing hotspot with 76 active cases.

 

 

Bajo.GIF

LN.GIF

Volcan.GIF

David.GIF

PA.GIF

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13 hours ago, OrangeHoof said:

Official numbers of interest from the MINSA website as of Sunday evening, July 5th, at 6 p.m.:

Bajo Boquete has added two new cases since my last post and Los Naranjos has added one. Alto Boquete is unchanged.

Volcan appears to have added some new cases while David is now past 300 active cases and heading toward 350.

Our friends in Puerto Armuelles seem to be in another growing hotspot with 76 active cases.

Again, thank you for posting this important information. I simply cannot get it out of the Minsa website, so obviously I am the one doing something wrong.

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COVID -19  1,166 new cases, 27 deaths

covid-rep.jpg

Posted 06/07/2020

With 1,166 new cases of COVID-19, the cumulative total in Panama reached 38,149, on Sunday, July 5 and 27 deaths brought the total to 747 since the virus first struck on Mach 9. 

The Health Ministry reported 18,420 people in isolation, 17,759 at home, and 661 in hotels. Hospitalizations reached  996 with  153 in ICU. A search is underway to recruit additional nurses including 50 intensivists.

 

https://www.newsroompanama.com/health/covid-19-1166-new-cases27-deaths-1

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Death toll rises convention centers marked for conversion to hospitals

amador.jpg

Posted 02/07/2020

July  opened with 913 new cases of Covid-19  raising  the total in Panama to 34,463 since the outbreak began on March 9 and 14 new deaths, brought  the total death toll to 645.

The Ministry of Health  reports that, 943 people remain hospitalized, 794 in the ward and 149 in Intensive Care.

There are 16,930 people in isolation, 16,251 at home and 679 in hospital hotels.

As  the availability of hospital beds shrinks  efforts are being made  to enable the Figali  and Amador Convention Centesr to be used if needed  and room  of the Social Security Fund and other hospitals are being expanded being expanded to install beds that for  COVID-positive patient

 

https://www.newsroompanama.com/health/death-toll-rises-convention-centers-marked-for-conversion-to-hospitals-1

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Moderator comment: Below is an email received from the US Embassy in Panama City concerning humanitarian flights.

Quote
------ Original Message ------
To:
Sent: 7/6/2020 8:39:08 AM
Subject: Message for U.S. Citizens: U.S. Embassy Panama City, Panama (July 6, 2020)
 

Seal with blue background

 

Message for U.S. Citizens:  U.S. Embassy Panama City, Panama (July 6, 2020) 

  

Location: Panama 

  

Event: Planned Commercial Humanitarian Flights 

  

The Embassy has identified seven upcoming humanitarian flights with seats available.  The flights are operated by Copa Airlines (flight numbers CM4983 and CM4982), United Airlines (both flights are number UA2417), and Spirit Airlines (all flights are number NK6511).  The flights are scheduled for July 8, 9, 10, 14, 15, 17, and 20.  There are no additional confirmed flights with available seats at this time, so if you desire to return to the United States, it is important to book immediately.  Any traveler with the appropriate passport/visa to permit entry into the United States who wishes to depart Panama is eligible to purchase a ticketTravelers should carefully plan their onward travel as hotel options in Dulles, Houston, and Ft. Lauderdale may be limited.  Once in the United States, all domestic travel arrangements are the sole responsibility of the traveler. 

  

The Embassy is aware that the Government of Panama has approved in-bound flights from the United States to Panama to provide Panamanian citizens and other qualified travelers the opportunity to travel to Panama.  Questions about qualifications necessary and approval for passengers on these flights should be directed to the Embassy of Panama, in Washington, D.C.  Airlines operating these flights, such as Copa Airlines, may occasionally be able to offer seats on the out-bound flights to some passengers.  Please contact the airline offering these seats for sale directly about those flights.  The U.S. Embassy in Panama will continue announcing all flights approved by the Panamanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs as humanitarian flights to the United States. 

  

NOTE – We encourage you to purchase your tickets as soon as possible to ensure you are able to return to the United States.  U.S. citizens who choose not to depart on these flights should prepare to remain in Panama indefinitely and shelter in place.    

  

  

The currently authorized, upcoming humanitarian flights are: 

  • July 8 Copa Airlines, departing Panama City’s Tocumen International Airport at 9:00 a.m. for Dulles, VA. 
  • July 9 Spirit Airlines, departing Panama City’s Tocumen International Airport at 2:00 p.m. for Fort Lauderdale, FL. 
  • July 10 United Airlines, departing Panama City’s Tocumen International Airport at 12:30 p.m. for Houston, TX. 
  • July 14 Spirit Airlines, departing Panama City’s Tocumen International Airport at 2:00 p.m. for Fort Lauderdale, FL. 
  • July 15 Copa Airlines, departing Panama City’s Tocumen International Airport at 9:00 a.m. for Dulles, VA. 
  • July 17 United Airlines, departing Panama City’s Tocumen International Airport at 12:30 p.m. for Houston, TX. 
  • July 20 Spirit Airlines, departing Panama City’s Tocumen International Airport at 2:00 p.m. for Fort Lauderdale, FL. 

  

For additional information about these flights and to make reservations please contact the airlines directly.  These tickets will be available soon, if not already, and the Embassy encourages you to check Copa’s, Spirit’s, and United’s websites regularly for updates. 

  

Flights that appear to be sold out may have openings due to cancelations.  Continue checking directly with the airlines for any openings. 

  

There are no guarantees for these flights or the space available. 

  

The Embassy encourages interested U.S. citizens and LPRs to purchase early and forward your purchase confirmation email to the Embassy immediately at PanamaCityUSCitizen@state.govso that we can assist you with the issuance of salvoconducto passes. 

  

The Embassy will continue its efforts to identify and seek approval for future humanitarian flights to the United States as long citizens indicate the desire to evacuate.  

  

Messages to U.S. citizens with updates on repatriation flights are sent daily to citizens living in Panama while the Embassy is assisting with approved flights from Panama to the United States.  Messages providing updated COVID-19 case numbers and information about the measures taken to combat COVID-19 in Panama will now be sent once per week, unless there are significant changes requiring immediate updates. 

  

Consult the Embassy’s website (https://pa.usembassy.gov/) for additional information on the situation in Panama and the Department of State’s COVID-19 crisis page on travel.state.gov for the latest information. 

 

Assistance:    

  

U.S. Embassy Panama City, Panama 

Building 783, Demetrio Basilio Lakas Avenue  

Clayton, Panama  

+507 317-5000  

Panama-ACS@state.gov   

https://pa.usembassy.gov/   

  

  

State Department – Consular Affairs 

+1 (888)407-4747 or +1 (202)501-4444   

  

Enroll in Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive security updates.   

Follow us on Facebook and Twitter.  

 

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Moderator comment: Below is an email received from the US Embassy in Panama City.

Quote
------ Original Message ------
To:
Sent: 7/6/2020 4:39:27 PM
Subject: Health Alert: U.S. Embassy Panama City, Panama (July 6, 2020)
 

Seal with blue background

 

Health Alert:  U.S. Embassy Panama City, Panama (July 6, 2020) 

  

Location: Panama 

  

Event: Report from Presidential Advisory Health Council on Panama’s COVID-19 Crisis 

 

In the interest of keeping the U.S. citizen community in Panama informed, the U.S. Embassy has translated the report by Panama’s Presidential Advisory Health Council on the COVID-19 crisis.  This report was distributed on July 3.  We continue to strongly recommend that all U.S. Citizens present in Panama closely follow health statements from the Government of Panama.  This report is available in English at https://pa.usembassy.gov/presidential-advisory-health-council-on-panamas-covid-19-crisis/.  The Spanish version is also available at https://pa.usembassy.gov/es/consejo-consultivo-presidencial-de-salud-acerca-de-la-crisis-del-covid-19-en-panama/ 

 

Assistance:     

  

U.S. Embassy Panama City, Panama   
Building 783, Demetrio Basilio Lakas Avenue   
Clayton, Panama   
+507 317-5000   
Panama-ACS@state.gov    
https://pa.usembassy.gov/    
  

State Department – Consular Affairs   
+1 (888)407-4747 or +1 (202)501-4444    

  

Enroll in Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive security updates.   

  

Follow us on Facebook and Twitter.  

 

 

Quote

Consejo Consultivo Presidencial de Salud acerca de la crisis del COVID-19 en Panamá.

 

Con el objetivo de mantener informada a la comunidad estadounidense en Panamá, la Embajada de los EE.UU. comparte el informe emitido por el Consejo Consultivo Presidencial de Salud de Panamá sobre la crisis de COVID-19. Este informe fue distribuido el 3 de julio. Continuamos recomendando encarecidamente a los ciudadanos estadounidenses presentes en Panamá que se mantengan atentos a las declaraciones de salud del Gobierno de Panamá. 

 

COMUNICADO 

CONSEJO CONSULTIVO PRESIDENCIAL DE SALUD.  

 

Los suscritos miembros del Consejo Consultivo recientemente nombrados por el Excelentísimo Sr. presidente de la República, Laurentino Cortizo, hemos considerado nuestro deber moral y cívico dirigirnos a nuestros conciudadanos para contestar cuatro preguntas claves en relación con la pandemia de COVID-19 que ha impactado en la salud, la vida y el bienestar de los panameños.  Lo hacemos siguiendo una de los principios fundamentales de la medicina del siglo 21: los pacientes y la población están en el centro del escenario de la salud pública, las decisiones deben ser compartidas y son los pacientes y la población los dueños de su destino, de su salud y de sus vidas y deben asumir un rol proactivo en la toma y la implementación de las medidas sanitarias en conjunto con los lineamientos que establezca la salud pública. 

Nuestro deber es asesorar al Sr. presidente de forma integral con respecto a la pandemia. 

PRIMERA PREGUNTA: ¿CUÁL ES EL ESTADO ACTUAL DE LA PANDEMIA DE COVID-19 EN NUESTRO PAÍS? 

La pandemia en Panamá está en la fase 4 que es la más avanzada de la pandemia según la Organización Mundial de la Salud,  que es transmisión comunitaria a un alto nivel , focalizado en el área metropolitana , Panamá Este , Panamá Oeste y San Miguelito y repunte de algunas provincias, donde hay un aumento significativo de los casos a casi el triple y un aumento en la mortalidad importante , con una amenaza del desborde de un sistema de salud que ya estaba frágil en su red sanitaria en particular en los hospitales y su atención primaria. 

SEGUNDA PREGUNTA: ¿CUALES FACTORES HAN CAUSADO ESTA EVOLUCIÓN?: 

La presencia de este nuevo virus produciendo esta enfermedad inédita que ahora coexiste con las enfermedades crónicas y la desigualdad socioeconómica que hacen más difícil las medidas de contención y de mitigación de la pandemia viral.  Debemos reconocer que en estos cuatro meses la no experiencia en el conocimiento del virus se centró en la atención curativa y en menor escala en la participación preventiva acompañado de una baja dinámica de prevención de la enfermedad centrada en las comunidades con una activa participación comunitaria y es nuestro deber expresar claramente que no hay salida a una pandemia sin una respuesta comunitaria fuerte y entusiasta. 

TERCERA PREGUNTA: ¿CUÁL SERÁ LA EVOLUCIÓN DE LA PANDEMIA EN LAS PRÓXIMAS SEMANAS? 

De acuerdo al comportamiento epidemiológico, el pronóstico que se vislumbra es un incremento en los casos de manera significativa y riesgo de ocupación total de hospitales y aumento en la mortalidad en forma general con un riesgo en el descontrol social y agotamiento en el sector salud, y económico.   

CUARTA PREGUNTA QUE HACER: ¿QUE HACER? PROPUESTA DE ACCIÓN: 

Fortalecer la red sanitaria nombrando a: 

■ 200 médicos exclusivamente para la atención comunitaria en la red COVID. 

■ 3,000 ayudantes comunitarios y sanitarios exclusivamente para COVID y su ubicación en las áreas de mayor actividad del COVID con entrenamiento rápido y eficaz para el rastreo epidemiológico ya establecido y 

■ Enfermeras, Auxiliares y todo el personal necesario para fortalecer los servicios de la red sanitaria en COVID, en base a la necesidad de las áreas más afectadas. 

Además: 

■ Comprar un millón de pruebas de hisopado para hacerle pruebas al personal de salud y a la población de manera urgente, medicación y máquinas nuevas en la CSS ya instaladas. 

■ Garantizar que el personal de salud tenga todos los instrumentos y equipos necesarios para   garantizar su seguridad en la atención de salud. 

■ Mesa interinstitucional de coordinación, MEF, MINSA, MICI y MITRADEL (ya nombrados por el Sr. presidente y en ejecución). 

■ Obtención de hoteles y albergues para poder trasladar inmediatamente a los pacientes positivos para que realicen una cuarentena adecuada. 

■ Apertura de áreas hospitalarias en lugares no convencionales, como centro de convenciones, transformación de áreas para ampliar red hospitalaria.   

■ Implementar reglas de pruebas de COVID a pacientes que acuden a los centros hospitalarios para otro tipo de hospitalización que no es COVID, para evitar propagación intra hospitalaria. 

■ Garantizar la atención de todo el servicio médico NO COVID para no tener otro brote de la desatención de otras causas en el programa de salud. 

■ Mantener la vigilancia de otros problemas como el Dengue, Hantavirus y otras enfermedades emergentes y remergentes. 

■ Establecer estructuras básicas de atención adecuadas en lugares donde exista gran cantidad de casos con médicos y personal para atención inmediata. 

■ Trazabilidad tecnológica digital con integración de comunidades y camas hospitalarias (ya en ejecución recientemente por el Ministerio de Salud). 

■ Mantener en estado de alta alerta y prevención con pruebas en lugares como asilos, cárceles, policía nacional, bomberos y, el ION y otros, usando el censo de enfermedades crónicas. 

■ Distribución de todo el equipo nuevo según componente epidemiológico. 

■ Garantizar la alimentación y la condición económica del paciente con COVID a través del plan solidario Panamá. 

  1. Los que están en hotel la situación es más pragmática pues le proporcionan la alimentación debida.
  2. Los que están en su domicilio habrá que garantizar su alimentación en base a su nivel socio económico.

■ Fuerte programa de educación comunitaria y campaña de motivación. 

■ Consultas a todos los sectores de la salud panameña como la Escuela de Salud Pública, Asociación de Médicos intensivistas, Médicos del Complejo Hospitalario, Veterinarios, Consultas internacionales. (realizado y en ejecución). 

■ Re apertura económica sin desigualdad socio económica para comenzar a disminuir ese grave problema que ha sido completamente más visible por la pandemia, se hará con control y prevención del COVID estableciendo listado de control. 

■ Tener varios equipos de limpieza de áreas o clúster de infección y para los hospitales y centros de atención. 

■ Hacer un estudio de prevalencia en empresas o áreas que se piensan abrir. 

■ Garantizar que la prueba pcr de COVID esta negativa antes de darle de alta al paciente o a los q estén en cuarentena en cualquier sitio. 

■ Apoyo internacional de países que han demostrado interés en ayudarnos, consultaremos con: China, Corea, Singapur, Israel, Cuba y EEUU. 

 

Panamá, 3 de julio de 2020. 

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Quote

Presidential Advisory Health Council on Panama’s COVID-19 crisis.

 

In the interest of keeping the U.S. citizen community in Panama informed, the U.S. Embassy has translated the report by Panama’s Presidential Advisory Health Council on the COVID-19 crisis. This report was distributed on July 3. We continue to strongly recommend that all U.S. citizens present in Panama closely follow health statements from the Government of Panama.  

 

UNOFFICIAL TRANSLATION 

ANNOUNCEMENT 

PRESIDENTIAL ADVISORY HEALTH COUNCIL. 

 

The undersigned, members of the Advisory Council recently appointed by His Excellency, the President of the Republic Laurentino Cortizo, consider it our moral and civic duty to address our fellow citizens to answer four key questions regarding the COVID-19 pandemic which has impacted the health, life and wellbeing of all Panamanians. We do this in service of one of the basic tenets of medicine in the 21st century: the patients and the population are at the forefront of the public health scene, all decisions must be shared and it is the patients and the population who own their destiny, their health and their lives, and they must assume a proactive role in taking and implementing sanitary measures jointly with the guidelines established by public health. 

Our duty is to advise the President comprehensively regarding the pandemic. 

FIRST QUESTION: WHAT IS THE CURRENT STATUS OF THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC IN OUR COUNTRY? 

The pandemic in Panama is in phase 4 which is the most advanced in the pandemic according to the World Health Organization, which is community transmission at a high level, focused in the metropolitan area, East Panama, West Panama and San Miguelito, with a spike in some provinces where there is an almost triple increase in cases, and an important increase in mortality, this threatens to overflow a health system which already had a weak health network particularly in hospitals and primary attention. 

SECOND QUESTION: WHAT FACTORS HAVE CAUSED THIS EVOLUTION? 

The presence of this new virus that produced this unprecedented disease which now co-exists with chronic diseases and the social and economic disparity make it harder to contain and mitigate this viral pandemic. We must recognize that in these four months the lack of experience and knowledge of this virus centered our attention on healing patients and on a lesser degree in the participation in prevention as well as a low dynamic in preventing the disease centered in communities with active community participation and it is our duty to clearly state that there in no way out of a pandemic without a robust and enthusiastic community response. 

THIRD QUESTION: HOW WILL THE PANDEMIC EVOLVE IN THE FOLLOWING WEEKS? 

Following the epidemiological behavior, the forecast is a significant increase in cases and the risk of total occupancy in hospitals and a general increase in mortality with risk of social unrest and exhaustion of the health and economic sectors. 

FOURTH QUESTION: WHAT DO WE DO? PROPOSED ACTIONS: 

Strengthen our health network by appointing: 

■ 200 doctors exclusively for community attention of the COVID network. 

■ 3,000 community and health assistants exclusively for COVID and assign them to areas with the most COVID activity with quick and efficient training in epidemiological tracing as already established, and 

■ Nurses, nurses aids and all personnel necessary to strengthen the services of the health network for COVID, based on the needs of the most affected areas. 

Additionally: 

■ Urgently purchase one million swab test kits to test health personnel and the public, medication and new equipment for Social Security System already installed. 

■ Ensure that health personnel have all the instruments and equipment they need to ensure their safety while providing medical care. 

■ Interinstitutional coordinating body, Ministry of Economy and Finance (MEF), Ministry of Health (MINSA), Ministry of Commerce and Industry (MICI) and Ministry of Labor (MITRADEL) (already appointed by the President and in execution). 

■ Obtaining hotels and shelters to immediately transfer positive patients so they can adequately quarantine. 

■ Open hospital areas in unconventional locations such as convention centers, transform areas to broaden the hospital network. 

■ Implement rules for COVID testing on patients admitted to hospitals for other types of issues not related to COVID, to prevent propagation within the hospitals. 

■ Ensure the provision of all medical services NON COVID related so there is no additional outbreak caused by lack of attention to other causes in the health system. 

■ Maintain vigilance on other issues such as Dengue, Hantavirus and other diseases that emerge or may re-emerge. 

■ Establish adequate basic care structures in places where there are many cases with doctors and personnel for immediate attention. 

■ Digital technological traceability which integrates communities and hospital beds (already being executed by the Ministry of Health). 

■ Maintain a state of high alert and prevention by testing in places such as care homes, jails, national police, fire department and Oncological Institute, and others, using the chronic disease census. 

■ Distribute all the new equipment following the epidemiological component. 

■ Ensure food and the economic conditions of COVID patients through Panama Solidario program. 

  1. For those in hotels the situation is more pragmatic as they are adequately fed.
  2. For those in their homes we must guarantee food based on their social and economic status.

■ Solid community education program and motivation campaign. 

■ Consult with all sectors of Panamanian health such as the Public Health School, Association of Intensive Care Physicians, Doctors of the Hospital Complex, Veterinarians, international consultation (already carried out and being executed). 

■ Reopen the economy without social and economic disparity to start decreasing the serious problem which has become entirely more visible with the pandemic, there will be controls and prevention for COVID establishing a control list. 

■ Establish several cleaning crews per infection area or cluster, and for hospitals and centers providing services. 

■ Conduct prevalence studies on companies or areas that plan to reopen. 

■ Ensure that the COVID pcr test is negative before discharging a patient or those who are under quarantine anywhere. 

■ International support from countries who have shown interest in assisting, we will consult with: China, Korea, Singapore, Israel, Cuba, and U.S. 

Panama, July 3, 2020 

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