The Government of Costa Rica informed this Friday of the entry into force of phase 3 of reopening of economic activities and announced that international airports will open on August 1 for flights from countries that have the SARS-CoV-2 virus low control.
“On August 1, they will be able to open international airports for flights from countries with a controlled transmission situation. There is a very strict sanitary protocol to give traceability to the people who enter,” declared Health Minister Daniel Salas at the conference. daily press release on the pandemic.
Salas assured that the airport protocol is practically ready, although some details are being refined.
The opening of airports, which have been closed since mid-March, has been a request in recent weeks from the business sectors and inhabitants of tourist areas, since Costa Rica is a country whose economy is highly dependent on tourism.
“We are trying to take stock, but we need a full commitment from everyone. All this dynamic of continuing to live with the virus deserves the highest degree of responsibility,” said Minister Salas.
Starting this weekend, phase 3 of the economic reopening plan is enabled, which had been suspended last Friday after accounting for a significant increase in cases and the risk of contagion that Father’s Day entailed in the event of possible holidays or meetings.
This phase 3, which will be applied differently depending on the magnitude of the alert in cantons or districts, enables shops, cinemas, museums and theaters to operate at weekends at 50% of their capacity. These businesses could already operate during the week with phase 2.
Starting this Saturday, churches and places of worship can be reopened with a maximum of 75 people present, with the respective social distancing and the mandatory use of a mask.
This phase 3 also enables the beaches from 05:00 to 09:30, which means an extension of one and a half hours compared to the previous stage.
In phase 2, restaurants, cafes, hotels and other businesses could already operate at a capacity of 50%, with distance measures and with sanitary protocols, and it allows contact sports but without the public and under specific protocols.
Bars, discos and casinos remain closed and the academic year is still suspended.
Costa Rica is going through its second pandemic wave with sustained growth in infections. This Friday, the authorities accounted for 152 new cases of COVID-19 (the second highest daily number), for a total of 2,836 since March 6, when the diagnosis was confirmed in the country.
So far 1,280 people have recovered, 12 have died and the rest remain with the active virus.
There are currently 36 people hospitalized, the highest number recorded during the pandemic, of which 6 are in intensive care units.
This week, the health authorities are carrying out 1,000 tests in neighborhoods in the populous town of Pavas, in the west of the capital, in order to determine or rule out whether this is the first community with community transmission in the country.