Tips for Survival during the COVID-19 Outbreak

Written by Wanitcha S.

 

It's been a challenging time for everyone, especially for expats who have to keep up with local regulations. If you are working and living in Thailand, Myanmar, Vietnam or Cambodia where COVID-19 cases have been confirmed, here are the tips for survival during the COVID-19 outbreak (as of 13 April 2020).


Thailand:

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The Thai government introduced the Emergency Decree on 26 March 2020 and current it is still in force to prevent the further spread of COVID-19. It will take effect until 30 April. Precautionary measures have been introduced, and all nationals in Thailand are advised to follow as well.  

Entry and borders:

  • All foreign nationals are banned from entering or transiting Thailand, except in certain limited circumstances.

  • Persons on diplomatic or consular mission or under international organisations, representatives of governments performing their duties in Thailand or other having permission from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs are allowed to enter the kingdom with extra requirements such as fit-to-fly health certificate, which is issued no more than 72 hours before travelling.

  • If any nationals are suspected of carrying COVID-19, they may be denied entry into the country.

  • Non-Thai nationals with work permits shall have a fit-to-fly health certificate which is issued more than 72 hours before travelling.

  • Persons exempted by the Prime Minister or Permanent Secretary of Ministry of Foreign Affairs under certain conditions and for a prescribed time period are allowed to enter the kingdom.

  • Pilot-in-command and crew members with fixed travel schedule are allowed to enter the country.

  • Carriers of necessary cargoes shall leave Thailand immediately after their mission completed.

  • Airports are closed for inbound commercial flights.

Local Measures:

  • Under the decree, traveling between provinces are limited. There are checkpoints in place between provinces.

  • A nationwide curfew is in effect between 10pm and 4 am each day despite of some limited exceptions including travel to and from airports.

  • Other exceptions include medical personnel, banking sector workers, transportation of essential goods, commuting to and from the airport (with flight tickets), postal delivery, and those with official night shift duty. Violation of the decree will lead to 2 years in prison and/or THB40,000 fine.

  • All malls in Bangkok are closed from 22 March until 30 April. Supermarkets, pharmacies, sections in malls selling foods and restaurants offering remain open with some restriction times.

  • All entertainments venues such as pubs and clubs are closed. Schools, tutorial schools and universities are closed.

  • Individuals must not enter high risk areas, hoard essential goods, attend public gatherings and propagate false information.

  • Elderly (over 70 years old) and children (under 5 years) as well as those with pre-existing conditions such as diabetes, hypertension, respiratory diseases, and lung diseases are advised to stay home.

  • All passengers are instructed to wear mask on all public transport.

  • If you are taking a domestic flight, you are required to download the AOT Airports App and complete a T8 Travel Form.

  • Some domestic flights have been halted due to temporary close of provinces such Phuket.

Healthcare Measures:

  • All nationals are advised to remain up to date with the latest health advice provided by Thailand’s Ministry of Public Health (MoPH) and updates from the Center for COVID-19 Situation Administration.

  • Provincial authorities may impose measures that are stricter or different than those in other areas, including wearing mask compulsory at all time, longer curfews, or the closure of hotels and beaches.

 Keep Updated with COVID-19 Situation:

  • COVID-19 TH STAT

    • COVID-19 TH STAT is a website that reports the updated COVID-19 situation from the Department of Disease Control (DDC) under the Ministry of Public Health.

  • MoPH’s Facebook Fanpage

    • The fanpage of the Ministry of Public Health (MoPH) has been created to give updated information of the ministry including the situation of COVID-19.

  • WHO (Thailand)

    • The World Health Organization (WHO) has a webpage where COVID-19 situations in Thailand have been published. It contains case reports, precautionary measures for safety, and questions and answers in both Thai and English that everyone needs to know.

Useful Applications:

  • 5lab.co

    • 5lab.co is an online map that provides information on the spread of COVID-19 in Thailand with an interactive map of numbers, and locations of the infected patients.

  • DDC-Care App

    • DDC-Care is an application to track and evaluate the health of those who returned from risk countries under the 14-day quarantine.

  • AOT Airport App

    • AOT Airport Application is designed to collect the data from all foreign travellers in Thailand as well as the Thais who returned from the risk countries announced by the Ministry of Public Health.

  • SydeKick for ThaiFightCOVID

    • SydeKick for ThaiFightCOVID has been designed to follow up and monitor those Thai returnees from risk countries.

Embassies:

  • Expats should contact the relevant consulate or embassy.


Myanmar:

Yangon

The Myanmar government has introduced various measures in response to the coronavirus (COVID) outbreak, and if you are in Myanmar, you should also follow them.

Entry and borders:

  • So far, Myanmar has suspended all entries to foreign nationals except diplomats accredited to Myanmar, UN officials and air and sea crew operating to and from Myanmar.

Local Measures:

  • Public events including festivals and cinemas are cancelled and restricted.

  • Restaurants in Yangon have been instructed to close except for delivery service.

  • All residents are requested to stay home during the Thingyan festival from 10 to 19 April, except for essential journeys and healthcare.

  • All hotels and guest houses in Mandalay have been closed from 7 April to 21 April with travel restriction in and out of the city.

  • Checkpoints are setup to make sure all foreign tourists are staying in registered hotels and guest houses, not in a private apartment.

 Healthcare Measures:  

  • If you are in Myanmar and display symptoms of coronavirus, you are advised to consult your healthcare provider. You may be asked to notify the Myanmar national Hotline for Coronavirus at +95 67 3420268 and be transferred to a public health facility for testing.

  • If you are tested positive for COVID-19, you are very likely to be transferred to a Government quarantine hospital until you are recovered.

  • Patients shall use state facilities although they have private insurance.

  • Patients in state hospitals are expected to be bringing in food and other essential supplies.

  • You are under isolation condition; you are not allowed to travel to purchase food or make phone calls.

  • Myanmar’s medical facilities may not be able to offer routine. 

Keep Updated with COVID-19 Situation:

  • The Ministry of Health and Sports (MOHS)

    • The Ministry of Health and Sports (MOHS) regroups the two following ministries: Ministry of Health and Ministry of Sports. In 2016, the Ministry of Sports (Myanmar) was dissolved, and organised it under the Ministry of Health. Thee MOHS is currently reporting the statistics and situations about COVID-19 outbreak in the country.  

  • WorldOmeter

Useful Applications:

  • N/A

Embassies:

  • Expats should contact the relevant consulate or embassy.

 

Vietnam:      

Vietnam-LumaHealth

Like other countries in Southeast Asia, Vietnam has confirmed cases of coronavirus (COVID-19). The Vietnamese government has introduced various measures to limit the spread of the virus.

Entry and Borders:

  • Entry of foreigners to the country is banned.

  • Nationwide lockdown takes effective from 31 March to 15 April.

Local Measures:

  • Movement between and within cities across the country is not encouraged with penalties.

  • Checkpoints are setup in some areas where people will be asked about their travelling history and having temperature check.

  • People are strongly advised to stay home, leaving only to buy food and medicine.

  • If you leave your accommodation, always wear a mask, practice social distancing, and avoid crowded areas.

  • Public transportation and taxi services are being widely suspended; domestic flights are reduced; essential services remain open.

  • Passengers arriving into domestic terminals in some Vietnamese airports are now undergoing quick COVID-19 test.

  • Restrictions have been announced in Hai Phong, Da Nang, and Quang Nam that anyone arriving from either Hanoi or Ho Chi Minh City or other Vietnamese province with confirmed COVID-19 cases will be quarantined and self-pay for all quarantine costs.

  • Thai Binh and Quang Ninh is not refusing the entry to people unless they are travelling for essential reasons such as food shopping, medical appointment, etc. 

Healthcare Measures:

  • Compulsory quarantine and self-isolation will be required for anyone who is suspected of coming into contact with the virus.

  • The Vietnamese government has confirmed that it will cover all quarantine costs, but foreign nationals will be personally responsible for paying for any COVID-19 hospital treatment costs, and hotel costs from the period of self-isolation.

  • Vietnamese quarantine centres are basic. The increasing number of people in quarantine may reduce the standards of quarantine facilities.

  • If you come into contact with someone who is positive with coronavirus, you must expect to comply with the Vietnamese state quarantine.

  • If you have positive result, you will be expected to undertake a period of self-isolation after this point and restrictions on travel for a further period of 14 days.

  • Vietnam's health hotline: 19003228

Keep Updated with COVID-19 Situation:

  • The Ministry of Health

    • The Ministry of Health is the government ministry responsible for the governance and guidance of the health, healthcare and health industry of Vietnam. The ministry publishes the information about COVID-19 situation regularly on their website. 

Useful Applications:

  • SmartCity

    • Vietnam has launched the SmartCity application to prevent and slow down the spread of the virus by Hanoi Steering Committee for COVID-19 Prevention and Control. The app will track confirmed cases and people that are required to be quarantined as well as the patients who have recovered

  • Coronavirus App Map

Embassies:

  • Expats should contact the relevant consulate or embassy.

 

Cambodia:

Vietnam-Lumahealth1

The Cambodian government has imposed various precautionary measures to prevent the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19). Therefore, it is challenging from all nationals to plan on catching flights and other daily activities.

Entry and Borders:

  • The Cambodia-Laos, Cambodia-Thailand, and Cambodia-Vietnamese borders remain closed until further notice.

  • Some restrictions are imposed to those travellers coming from, and the nationals of, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, the USA and Iran.

  • Suspension of tourist visas, e-visas, visa on arrival and visa exemptions come into effect on 31 March 2020.

Local Measures:

  • The Cambodian Prime Ministry announced on 7 April 2020 that the Khmer New Year holiday that will be taking place from 13 to 16 April would be cancelled, which will apply to both private and public sectors.

  • If you are stopped on your way to Phnom Pehn during local trips, contact the Ministry of Foreign Affairs at +855 11256777 who will talk directly to the local police to ensure you of your continual necessary journeys.

  • Those aged 70 and over and those with underlying health conditions like chronic diseases and diabetes are not advised to travel on cruise ships.

Healthcare Measures:

  • You are advised to comply with any additional screening measures by the Cambodian authorities.

Keep Updated with COVID-19 Situation:

Useful Applications:

Embassies:

  • Expats should contact the relevant consulate or embassy.


We are certain that you collaborate with measures being rolled out by local authorities to help curve the spread of the virus. Meanwhile, stay safe and healthy. If you need health insurance, let us help you. Fill in the form below to get a quote.

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