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Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19)

To our valued Members and Business Partners:

The safety and well-being of our Members is always our priority. During this pandemic, our global team is engaged to continually assess and monitor its impact and to be available as a trusted resource for our Members and to continue to deliver global emergency assistance services to our Members who find themselves away from home.

Assist America is closely monitoring the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and World Health Organization’s (WHO) statements regarding the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) and is following guidelines set forth by these agencies as well as other health agencies worldwide.

To assist Members directly or indirectly affected by the pandemic, Assist America has adapted its global emergency assistance offering and provides the following services and resources:  
  • Access to 24/7 Operations Center: Assist America’s 24/7 Operations Centers, strategically located across the world, remain fully operational and are available to service our Members facing a medical or non-medical emergency while away from home.
  • Testing Site Referral: Assist America’s 24/7 Operations Center is staffed by trained, multilingual assistance personnel who can locate testing facilities near the member’s location. Access to testing facilities will vary by location, provider and assessment of symptoms, pre-existing conditions and exposure to the virus.
  • Medical Monitoring: If a member has COVID-19, Assist America will monitor the member’s medical condition through the quarantine process and liaise with the health insurance.
  • Prescription Assistance: If a member is running out of medication, Assist America can help refill the prescription by contacting their doctor and sourcing the prescription at a pharmacy near the member’s location.
  • Return of Mortal Remains: In the event a member passes away while away from home, Assist America will provide guidance to the family and arrange and pay for the required documents, remains preparation and transport to bring the remains to a funeral home near the member’s place of residence. Our assistance coordinators are trained to follow the requirements and instructions set forth by local authorities and the CDC. Transportation time may vary depending on current COVID-19 travel restrictions and bans.
  • Stranded Traveler Assistance: If a member is stranded while traveling due to COVID-19 travel restrictions, our experienced travel assistance coordinators will help them make travel arrangements to return home, when legally permissible.
  • Dedicated COVID-19 Webpage: Assist America has implemented a dedicated COVID-19 landing page, available on our website and Mobile App. From health and prevention tips, to best practices videos, latest news and an interactive map of travel restrictions by country, the page is intended to be a go-to resource for members to learn more about the virus.
  • COVID-19 Email Updates: Members can sign up at www.assistamerica.com to receive our weekly COVID-19 Assist Alerts and update emails. Every two weeks, our team creates original content on a specific, COVID-19 related topic and shares the latest news and advice regarding the virus. 
Please contact our operations center for further information using our Mobile App for iPhone and Android or via the phone number indicated on your membership card.

Sincerely,
The Assist America Team
For our China Assist members:
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A Message from our Executive Team


 

Assist America Documents and Resources

Assist America COVID-19 Service Offering

COVID-19 and Travel - 5 Key Questions Answered

Assist America COVID-19 Report

Quarantine Tips

COVID-19 Symptoms & Prevention


COVID-19 Cases by Country (Map)

 

Interactive Map of COVID-19 Travel Restrictions

World Map
Infogram
 
For a complete list of travel restrictions by country, visit our dedicated COVID-19 Travel Restrictions webpage.

How Exposed is Your Job?

As lockdown measures and stay-at-home orders are being lifted in several countries around the world, many are gearing up to head back to an office setting. Data from the UK's Office for National Statistics, based on a US survey, puts into context the risk of exposure to disease, as well as the amount of close human contact workers had before social distancing and other safety measures were introduced.

Note: The ranking is based on a total of 359 professions, with 1 being the most exposed job and 359, the profession with the smallest risk of exposure to COVID-19. 

A modern browser with JavaScript and a stable internet connection is required to view this interactive.


Credit source: BBC News


U.S.COVID-19 Testing Facilities Locator


COVID-19 Testing Facilities Locator (U.S.A)

Videos




 


Click a section to expand.

Latest News and Updates

January 21 – Can the COVID-19 Vaccine Beat the Proliferation of New Virus Mutations?
https://www.newyorker.com/news/daily-comment/can-the-covid-19-vaccine-beat-the-proliferation-of-new-virus-mutations
All viruses change. sars-CoV-2 had been remarkably stable as it coursed around the world, being so well adapted to the human host. This stability allowed the development of vaccines that are finely targeted for vulnerable regions of the virus’s spike protein. In February, 2020, a new variant emerging from Italy proved to be more infectious than the original Wuhan variant.

January 19 – Microsoft's Washington campus will become a COVID-19 vaccination site
https://www.cnet.com/health/microsofts-washington-campus-will-become-a-covid-19-vaccination-site/  
Microsoft is partnering with Washington state hospitals to turn a building on its campus into a COVID-19 vaccination site in February, company president Brad Smith said Monday. With many of its employees working from home due to the pandemic, some of the company's buildings are temporarily vacant.

January 18 – Underselling the Vaccine
https://www.nytimes.com/2021/01/18/briefing/donald-trump-pardon-phil-spector-coronavirus-deaths.html
Early in the pandemic, many health experts — in the U.S. and around the world — decided that the public could not be trusted to hear the truth about masks. Instead, the experts spread a misleading message, discouraging the use of masks.

January 15 – COVID-19 death toll reaches 2 million globally
https://www.cnet.com/health/covid-19-death-toll-reaches-2-million-globally/  
The world reached a grim milestone Friday, as the total number of deaths due to the coronavirus passed the 2 million mark, according to the COVID-19 dashboard at Johns Hopkins University. The US accounts for nearly 400,000 of those deaths -- vastly more than any other country -- and represents nearly 20% of that global total.

January 14 – A Guide to the New Covid-19 Testing Rules for Travel to the U.S.
https://www.wsj.com/articles/the-new-covid-19-testing-rules-for-travel-to-the-u-s-what-they-mean-for-you-11610566341  
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has ordered that all travelers flying to the U.S. from abroad will have to show proof of negative Covid-19 tests before boarding their flight starting Jan. 26. The CDC said preflight testing is necessary as Covid-19 cases continue to soar and new, more contagious strains of the virus emerge around the world.

January 13 – Brand-new, more infectious COVID-19 variant discovered in U.S.
https://www.kiro7.com/news/local/brand-new-more-infectious-covid-19-variant-discovered-us/OFKAJQEGKFFQHCXPRGOFOPUVIY/
Scientists have discovered another new strain of COVID-19 in the United States. This one evolved independently from the U.K. variant, and researchers believe the brand-new strain is also more contagious.

January 13 – What we know about the spread of Covid among children — and whether shutting schools reduces the risk
https://www.cnbc.com/2021/01/13/coronavirus-children-and-schools-a-guide-on-what-we-know-so-far.html
LONDON — The science around the link between children and the spread of the coronavirus is still evolving, but a growing body of evidence suggests that kids attending school do play an important role in community transmission.

January 13 – US will require negative COVID-19 tests for international travelers
https://www.cnet.com/health/us-will-require-negative-covid-19-tests-for-international-travelers/
The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention approved a measure Tuesday that will require all international air travelers to obtain a negative COVID-19 test before flying to the states. The order goes into effect Jan. 26.

January 12 – US will require all arriving passengers to get COVID-19 test
https://apnews.com/article/us-will-require-travelers-covid-19-test-7bd66c0014e597f930423c86beca5707
NEW YORK (AP) — Anyone flying to the U.S. will soon need to show proof of a negative test for COVID-19, health officials announced Tuesday. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention requirement expands on a similar one announced late last month for passengers coming from the United Kingdom. The new order takes effect in two weeks.

January 11 – Cancun Hotels will offer PCR tests
https://www.cancuniairport.com/cancun-hotels-will-offer-pcr-tests/
Cancun Hotels will offer PCR tests  – USA citizens and Canadians are the main visitors to Cancun and the Riviera Maya. We all know how the tourism industry is operating these days, which was the most affected by the Coronavirus disease. Tourism is slowly recovering, and that is why many countries had to implement different sanitary measures.

January 11 – COVID-19 travel restrictions by state: See testing, quarantine requirements
https://www.usatoday.com/story/travel/news/2021/01/11/covid-travel-restrictions-which-states-require-covid-test-quarantine/6566179002/   
The U.S. is still setting new COVID-19 death records, even as vaccines are rolling out across the country. And approximately 1 in every 15 Americans had tested positive for the coronavirus that cause COVID-19 as of Saturday evening, according to data from Johns Hopkins University. The U.S. surpassed more than 22 million cases Saturday.

January 6 – CDC says severe allergic reactions to coronavirus vaccine are rare
https://www.cnn.com/2021/01/06/health/covid-vaccines-cdc-allergic-safety-wellness/index.html
Only 29 people have experienced severe allergic reactions to the coronavirus vaccine, making it a rare outcome, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Wednesday. By comparison, the rate of severe allergic reaction for the flu vaccine is 1.3 per 1 million doses.

January 6 – Coronavirus variant discoveries in UK and South Africa began with a bet of a bottle of wine
https://www.cnn.com/2021/01/06/health/south-africa-sequencing-coronavirus-variant/index.html
The discovery of important new coronavirus variants in the UK and South Africa began with a bet of a bottle of wine. In mid-November, Tulio de Oliveira, began receiving anxious phone calls from physicians in the Eastern Cape province who were seeing an explosive growth in Covid-19 patients. The increase had seemingly come out of nowhere.

January 5 – England Enters Another National Lockdown as of Tuesday
https://www.cnn.com/world/live-news/coronavirus-pandemic-vaccine-updates-01-05-21/index.html     
England entered another national lockdown on Tuesday as coronavirus cases surge in the UK. Hospitalizations in the US continue to rise following the holidays — and the case surge has also limited the vaccine rollout. The head of WHO is "very disappointed" that scientists investigating the origins of Covid-19 were prevented from entering China due to delayed paperwork.

January 5 – New CDC study raises concern regarding COVID-19 immunity after infection
https://kstp.com/news/new-cdc-study-raises-concern-regarding-covid-19-immunity-after-infection-/5969395/  
People who have recovered from COVID-19 may not have 90 days of immunity, according to a recent study from the CDC. The study focused on 156 health care workers in the United States who tested positive for COVID-19. They took an antibody test about a month after developing symptoms and then took a second antibody test 60 days later.

January 4 – Air travel hit a new pandemic high over New Year’s weekend. Now comes the hard part
https://www.cnbc.com/2021/01/04/air-travel-hits-new-pandemic-high-over-new-years-weekend.html
U.S. travel hit a new pandemic high, surging from holiday demand despite new Covid-19 infection records. More than 1.3 million people passed through Transportation Security Administration checkpoints at U.S. airports on Sunday, 55% of the 2.4 million people TSA screened a year earlier but still the highest volume since March 15.

January 4 – Scotland will go back into national coronavirus lockdown, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon announces
https://www.businessinsider.com/scotland-will-go-into-coronavirus-lockdown-says-nicola-sturgeon-2021-1  
Scotland will go back into full national coronavirus lockdown with schools remaining closed and members of the public legally required to stay at home, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon announced on Monday afternoon.

January 2 – Not everyone will get the exact same COVID-19 vaccine. What to know
https://www.cnet.com/health/not-everyone-will-get-the-exact-same-covid-19-vaccine-what-to-know/
The first wave of coronavirus vaccinations is finally underway, and with it comes a heap of questions. The CDC prioritized which groups should get the very first available doses of the COVID-19 vaccine. However, states are not required to follow the CDC's lead, and some have already started bucking the federal agency's guidelines in favor of their own priority lists.

December 21 – FBI warns of COVID-19 vaccine scams
https://www.cnet.com/health/fbi-warns-of-covid-19-vaccine-scams/
The FBI and other US federal agencies on Monday issued a warning about scams related to offering the COVID-19 vaccine to people, usually for a down payment or for their medical and personal details. It follows a year of COVID-19 scams that have touted fake cures and charities while seeking your bank info.

December 21 – The UK is spooking everyone with its new covid-19 strain. Here’s what scientists know.
https://www.technologyreview.com/2020/12/21/1015315/the-uk-is-spooking-everyone-with-its-new-covid-19-strain-heres-what-scientists-know/        
A rising wave of covid-19 cases in the south of England has been blamed on a new variant of the coronavirus. The new version, which appeared by September, is now behind half the cases in the region.

December 21 – Britain cut off by Canada and others as new Covid strain spreads
https://www.nbcnews.com/news/world/britain-cut-canada-others-new-covid-strain-spreads-n1251884    
Dozens of countries, including Canada, France, Germany, Israel, Iran, Colombia and Morocco, have suspended flights from the U.K. for 48 hours or more. Saudi Arabia has closed its borders and suspended all flights regardless of destination or origin.

December 20 – The Coronavirus Is Mutating. What Does That Mean for Us?
https://www.nytimes.com/2020/12/20/health/coronavirus-britain-variant.html
Just as vaccines begin to offer hope for a path out of the pandemic, officials in Britain this past weekend sounded an urgent alarm about what they called a highly contagious new variant of the coronavirus circulating in England.

December 19 – COVID-19 vaccine facts: Moderna approved, hidden costs, when you can get vaccinated
https://www.cnet.com/health/covid-19-vaccine-facts-moderna-approved-hidden-costs-when-you-can-get-vaccinated/    
With two vaccines now granted emergency approval, where's your place in line? Will you have to pay anything? What can you do after you're vaccinated? Here's what you need to know.

December 9 – He Broke Out of Quarantine for 8 Seconds, and Got a $3,550 Fine
https://www.nytimes.com/2020/12/09/world/coronavirus-covid-19-quarantine-fine.html  
During the global pandemic, with entire cities locked down, travel heavily restricted and isolation fatigue setting in, thousands of people have been caught, fined or jailed for breaching coronavirus restrictions that have made once normal activities taboo.

December 9 – New Data Reveal Which Hospitals Are Dangerously Full. Is Yours?
https://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2020/12/09/944379919/new-data-reveal-which-hospitals-are-dangerously-full-is-yours       
The federal government on Monday released detailed hospital-level data showing the toll COVID-19 is taking on health care facilities, including how many inpatient and ICU beds are available on a weekly basis.

December 9 – Infected after 5 minutes, from 20 feet away: South Korea study shows coronavirus’ spread indoors
https://www.latimes.com/world-nation/story/2020-12-09/five-minutes-from-20-feet-away-south-korean-study-shows-perils-of-indoor-dining-for-covid-19   
Dr. Lee Ju-hyung has largely avoided restaurants in recent months, but on the few occasions he’s dined out, he’s developed a strange, if sensible, habit: whipping out a small anemometer to check the airflow.

December 9 – Allergy warning for Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine after UK health workers with allergy history suffer reaction
https://www.cnn.com/2020/12/09/health/covid-vaccine-allergies-health-workers-uk-intl-gbr/index.html
People with a "significant history of allergic reactions" should not be given the Pfizer/BioNTech coronavirus vaccine, UK health authorities said Wednesday, after two health care workers experienced symptoms after receiving a shot the day before.

December 9 – Covid world map: which countries have the most coronavirus cases and deaths?
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/dec/09/covid-world-map-which-countries-have-the-most-coronavirus-cases-and-deaths   
Obviously, larger countries tend to have higher numbers both of cases and of deaths. But there are many other factors in play, such as the demographic profiles of the countries; countries with ageing populations may be hit harder because the disease is more dangerous to older people.

December 6 – What coronavirus means for India's 'big fat weddings'
https://www.cnn.com/style/article/indian-weddings-covid-intl-hnk-dst/index.html
Blessing and Sheryl Jossy wanted to hold a wedding extravaganza across three cities. The college sweethearts, who live in the northern Indian state of Haryana, were planning to kick off with a multi-day wedding, before flying to the country's south to hold two more parties with Blessing's side of the family. All in all, they were expecting around 1,000 guests.

December 4 – What To Do If You Test Positive For The Coronavirus This Winter
https://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2020/12/04/939050215/what-to-do-if-you-test-positive-for-the-coronavirus-this-fall-or-winter
If you've gotten a positive test result, here's advice from doctors about how to handle a mild to moderate, or even asymptomatic, case on your own — and when you need to seek emergency help.


Official Links and Resources

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention provides updated information as it becomes available regarding health and travel during the Coronavirus pandemic. Find more information at: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html.
 
World Health Organization has an emergency page dedicated to the Coronavirus disease and updated information about public health measures. Read more: https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019.
 
John Hopkins University’s Center for Systems Science and Engineering are tracking the COVID-19 spread in real-time on their interactive dashboard with data available for download and to view on desktop or mobile. View their interactive map at: https://gisanddata.maps.arcgis.com/apps/opsdashboard/index.html#/bda7594740fd40299423467b48e9ecf6.
 
The European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) is an agency of the European Union that strengthens Europe’s defense against infectious diseases and provides many updates about the spread of COVID-19: https://www.ecdc.europa.eu/en/publications-data/rapid-risk-assessment-novel-coronavirus-disease-2019-covid-19-pandemic-increased.
 
The Department of Health from the Republic of Philippines advises about coronavirus cases in the country and has daily updates about the cases: https://www.doh.gov.ph/2019-nCoV.
 
Government of Canada has a diseases and conditions page dedicated to the Coronavirus disease and shares advice on preventative measures: https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/diseases/coronavirus-disease-covid-19.html/.
 
The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare in India has regular travel advisories and updates the number of people they have screened for the virus: https://www.mohfw.gov.in/.
 
United States Department of Health also offers valuable advice and updated information about the novel coronavirus: https://www.state.gov/coronavirus/.

Unacast provides an interactive Scoreboard to empower organizations to measure and understand the efficacy of social distancing initiatives at the local level: https://www.unacast.com/covid19/social-distancing-scoreboard.


Assist Alerts and Updates


COVID-19 Updates #16 - June 26: https://www.assistamerica.com/COVID-19-Update-16.aspx

COVID-19 Updates #15 - June 12: https://www.assistamerica.com/COVID-19-Update-15.aspx

COVID-19 Updates #14 - May 29: https://www.assistamerica.com/COVID-19-Update-14.aspx

COVID-19 Updates #12 - May 8: https://www.assistamerica.com/COVID-19-Update-12.aspx

COVID-19 Updates #11 - May 1: https://www.assistamerica.com/COVID-19-Update-11.aspx

COVID-19 Update #10 - April 24: https://www.assistamerica.com/COVID-19-Update-10.aspx

COVID-19 Update #9 - April 17: https://www.assistamerica.com/COVID-19-Update-9.aspx

Assist Alert #8 - April 10: https://www.assistamerica.com/Assist-Alert-Coronavirus-Update-8

Assist Alert #7 - April 3: https://www.assistamerica.com/Assist-Alert-Coronavirus-Update-7

Assist Alert #6 - March 27: https://www.assistamerica.com/Assist-Alert-Coronavirus-Update-6

Assist Alert #5 - March 20: https://www.assistamerica.com/Assist-Alert-Coronavirus-Update-5

Assist Alert #4 - March 4: https://www.assistamerica.com/Assist-Alert-Coronavirus-Update-4

Assist Alert #3 - March 31: https://www.assistamerica.com/Assist-Alert-Coronavirus-Update-3

Assist Alert #2 - January 24: https://www.assistamerica.com/Assist-Alert-Coronavirus-Update-2

Assist Alert #1 - January 22: https://www.assistamerica.com/Assist-Alert-Coronavirus-Update-1