New sanitary measures have been ordered this Friday 10th of July, to prevent the spread of COVID-19, according to the statement issued by the Presidency of the Republic and the Ministry of Health, for the dates 11 to 19th of July. The decision stems from the continued and exponential increase in cases identified in recent days. The following is a summary of the new measures:
Counties within orange alert zones:
The Great Metropolitan Area (“GAM”) has been declared in orange alert, thus stronger restrictions will be imposed on transportation measures, as well as the operation of commercial establishments. The orange alert counties inside and outside the GAM are as follows:
- San José: San José, Escazú, Desamparados, Aserrí, Mora, Goicochea, Santa Ana, Alajuelita, Vázquez de Coronado, Tibás, Moravia, Montes de Oca, Curridabat, Puriscal.
- Alajuela: Alajuela, Poás, Atenas, Grecia, Sarchí, Palmares, Naranjo, San Ramón y Zarcero, fuera del GAM Upala, Guatuso, Los Chiles, sector sureste del distrito de la fortuna de San Carlos (Tres Esquinas, Los Ángeles, Sonafluca, La Perla, San Isidro, El Tanque, San Jorge, Santa Cecilia), La Vega, Bonanza del distrito de Florencia del Cantón de San Carlos.
- Cartago: Cartago, Paraíso, La Unión, Alvarado, Oreamuno y El Guarco.
- Heredia: Heredia, Barva, Santo Domingo, Santa Barbara, San Rafael, San Isidro, Belén, Flores y San Pablo.
- Guanacaste: de Bagaces, Liberia, Carrillo y Cañas.
- Limón: Pococí, Talamanca y Guácimo.
- Puntarenas: Golfito, Garabito, Puntarenas (salvo los distritos de Cobano, Lepanto, Monteverde, Isla Chira, Isla Caballo, Isla San Lucas, Isla del Coco e Isla Venado) y Corredores
- Weekends (July 11th, 12th, 18th, and 19th): An increased vehicle restriction is now applicable to the entire country, from 5 a.m. to 5 p.m. For orange alert counties, exceptions to this restriction apply to medical health centers, pharmacies, suppliers, grocery stores and supermarkets. The plate restriction remains the same; even plates do not circulate on Saturdays, and odd plates do not circulate on Sundays.
- Weekdays (July 13th to 17th): Orange alert counties have absolute 24 hours vehicle restriction. Vehicles will be allowed to circulate on day a week, to attend supermarkets, pharmacies or health centers, depending on its license plate number, according to the following scheme:
- Monday: Plates 1 and 2
- Tuesday: Plates 3 and 4
- Wednesday: Plates 5 and 6
- Thursday: Plates 7 and 8
- Friday: Plates 9 and 0
- Exceptions to the above-mentioned vehicle restrictions, are reduced to essential productive activities, establishments authorized by the Ministry of Health and basic services.
- Public transport in orange alert areas will operate at 20%. Taxis and special transport services will operate regularly.
- The counties that remain with yellow alert will have a vehicle restriction of 7 p.m. to 5 a.m., during the weekdays, with ordinary plate distribution. Furthermore, the differentiated vehicle restriction in border areas (from 5 a.m. to 5 p.m.) remains the same, with the exception of Río Cuarto.
Regulation of establishments within orange alert zones:
In the orange alert counties, mentioned above, the only establishments enabled to operate are the following:
- Essential productive activities and their supply chains and support contact centers (agriculture, fishing, food industry, medical devices, chemicals and pharmaceuticals, information and communication technology).
- Supermarkets, suppliers and grocery stores.
- Bakeries, butchers and greengrocers.
- Pharmacies and medical centers.
- Home delivery (exclusive for food, pharmacy, veterinary, hardware and locksmith).
- Agricultural, veterinary and hygiene supplies.
- Funeral homes.
- Child care and development network centers and centers for people in vulnerable conditions.
- Hotels that provide services to public officers or that provide public services (such as banking, transportation of values, communications, electricity), or to people working in distribution services for basic necessities (including food, medicine or agricultural supplies).
- Farmer’s market, with a different schedule for senior adults from 5 a.m. to 8:30 a.m.
Regulation of establishments within yellow alert zones:
Establishments within yellow alert zones, will be allowed to operate in weekdays from 5 a.m. to 7 p.m., as long as they hold their Sanitary Operating Permit, according to the reopening declared phases scheme. Places of worship, beaches, hotels, restaurants, shops, museums, cinemas and theaters, and farmers’ market, will still be enabled to operate, with the applicable restrictions. Additionally, public transportation will continues to operate on a regular basis.
On July 20, the sanitary measures that were being applied as of July 10 will be reapplied.a
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