Coronavirus and the State of Emergency: Restrictions and Safeguards for Citizens Rights in the Special Period

Alla Kostovetska, Yana Yuzkova, KNEU

Introduction

Coronaviruses are a group of related viruses that cause diseases in mammals and birds. In humans, coronaviruses cause respiratory tract infections that can be mild, such as some cases of the common cold (among other possible causes), and others that can be lethal, such as SARS, MERS, and COVID-19. Symptoms in other species vary: in chickens, they cause an upper respiratory tract disease, while in cows and pigs they cause diarrhea.

Coronaviruses constitute the subfamily Orthocoronavirinae, in the family Coronaviridae. They are enveloped viruses with a positive-sense single-stranded RNA genome and a nucleocapsid of helical symmetry. The genome size of coronaviruses ranges from approximately 27 to 34 kilobases, the largest among known RNA viruses. The name coronavirus is came from the Latin corona, meaning “crown” or “halo”, which refers to the characteristic appearance of a crown or a solar corona around the virions (virus particles) when viewed under two-dimensional transmission electron microscopy, due to the surface covering in club-shaped protein spikes.

First were discovered in the late 1960s.

COVID-19

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is an infectious disease caused by respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). The disease was first identified in 2019 in Wuhan, China, and has since spread globally, resulting in the 2019–20 coronavirus pandemic.Common symptoms include fever, cough and shortness of breath. Muscle pain, sore throat are less common. While the majority of cases result in mild symptoms, some progress to severe pneumonia and multi-organ failure. The rate of deaths per number of diagnosed cases is on average 3.4%, ranging from 0.2% in those less than 20 to approximately 15% in those over 80 years old.

The infection is typically spread from one person to another via respiratory droplets produced during coughing and sneezing. Time from exposure to onset of symptoms is generally between 2 and 14 days, with an average of five days.

The World Health Organization (WHO) declared the 2019–20 coronavirus outbreak a pandemic and a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC). Evidence of local transmission of the disease has been found in many countries across all six WHO regions.

Signs and Symptoms

Many developed infected people have flu-like symptoms including fever, cough, and shortness of breath. Less commonly: upper respiratory symptoms such as sneezing, runny nose, or sore throat may be seen. Symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, and diarrhoea are seen in a minority of cases. In some, the disease may progress to pneumonia, multi-organ failure, and death.

As is common with infections, there is a delay from when a person is infected with the virus to when they develop symptoms, know as the incubation period. The incubation period for COVID-19 is typically five to six days but may range from two to 14 days.

Mild cases typically can be recovered within two weeks, while those with severe or critical disease may take three to six weeks to recover. Among those who have died, the time from symptom onset to death has ranged from two to eight weeks.

Statistics

The regions most affected by the pandemic virus in terms of the number of cases are mainland China, Europe (Italy, Spain, Germany, France, Switzerland), Iran, the Republic of Korea, and the USA.

In a report dated February 19th, 2020, 24:00 Beijing time, the National Health Commission of the PRC indicated that in the 31 administrative units of the provincial level of the PRC there were 74,576 confirmed cases, including 11,864 severe cases, 2118 people died and 16,155 people were cured; In addition, 99 confirmed cases were noted in Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan, three people died, 13 were cured .

On Saturday, February 29th, 2020, in mainland China, the total number of sick people 37 162 according to the results of the daily report was less than the number of people recovered 39 254 (on the same day of the report).

In Italy, due to the rapidly spreading of coronavirus, local authorities have closed the San Marco Basilica in Venice and the Cathedral of the Nativity of the Virgin Mary in Milan since February 23rd; such a decision was made in order to limit the concentration of people in public places. More than ten communes in which infected were found were isolated in the country. In transport, sanitary cordons were introduced, social events and classes in educational institutions were canceled. The Venice Carnival was suspended. The constitutional referendum scheduled for March 29th, 2020 has been canceled.

Since March 8th, the quarantine regime in northern Italy has been expanded: entry and exit from the regions (Lombardy and another 14 provinces, including Emilia-Romagna, Marche, Piedmont, Veneto) will be allowed only in exceptional cases. Since March 10, similar measures have been extended throughout Italy.

On March 9th, 2020, the Italian government announced that it would suspend all sports tournaments in the country, including Serie A, until April 3rd, 2020.

Coronavirus mortality rate by age

Conclusions based on 72,314 cases studied

As you can see on the diagram, the highest risk to get an illness from COVID-19 is the people, who are more than 60 years old. Such groups can develop pneumonia and die.

For other age groups the virus will have a form of regular illness, which cannot be led to death.

Government Actions

The outbreak of COVID-19, the illness caused by the novel coronavirus originating in Wuhan, China, is a significant challenge for the entire world.

The Government of different countries has created the infrastructure to respond to the public health threats of the virus, and is well prepared to act—in collaboration with provincial and territorial governments and international partners—to minimize the health, economic, and social impacts of this rapidly evolving public health issue.

World’s response is based on plans and guidance related to pandemic preparedness, with the following actions:

  1. Close all the schools, universities and kindergartens
  2. Stop all the events from happening
  3. Close spa centers, gyms, cinemas and shopping malls (Pharmacies and Supermarkets are open)

Ukraine and most of the countries of Europe closed borders, air connections and rail connections. in Kyiv and Kharkiv government closed metro. However, Great Britain and Sweden didn’t take such steps. These countries isolated people from 60 years old at home because if the young people get COVID-19 they are sick like with an ordinary illness.

State of Emergency

Due to the massive spread of the new type of coronavirus COVID-19, many countries today declare a state of emergency. Along with Kazakhstan, the state of emergency has already been introduced in Italy, the USA, Spain, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Romania, Bulgaria, and Slovakia.

As is known, the World Health Organization announced on March 11th a pandemic of the coronavirus. A new type of coronavirus infection COVID-19 has spread to 158 countries.

In Italy, where mass infection after China was registered, a state of emergency was introduced on January 31st. The country was one of the first among all countries to introduce such a regime. To date, more than 24 thousand people have become ill with the coronavirus, 1809 have died. By decision of the authorities, the regime will be in force for 6 months.

Due to the coronavirus, a state of emergency was declared in Hungary. This decision was made by the Government. In Hungary, all mass and solemn events were canceled.

The United States also announced a state of emergency. On March 13th, it became known that President Donald Trump, in a statement during a meeting with reporters, announced the introduction of a nationwide state of emergency. According to the BBC, the state of emergency makes it possible to allocate up to $50 billion to fight against coronavirus from the national disaster fund, and also allows federal authorities to more effectively coordinate actions with states and local authorities. The imposition of a state of emergency, according to Trump, will allow federal and local governments to better coordinate actions in a pandemic.

In addition, the state of emergency currently operates in Estonia. The country has banned the entry of foreign citizens. All public events are prohibited, the activities of schools, universities, cinemas, museums, theaters, gyms are suspended. Limited work of shopping centers. A similar situation is due to the pandemic in the Czech Republic, Bulgaria, Slovakia, Serbia. States have banned entry for foreign nationals. For example, in the Czech capital, even public catering facilities are closed. Most of them work only with delivery services. On March 15th, it became known that another country – Spain introduces a state of emergency. The state of emergency will last 15 days. The authorities decided to limit movement within the country, as there is a serious risk of mass spread of coronavirus infection. Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez announced the state of emergency after long seven-hour talks in the cabinet. The state of emergency in Spain involves restricting movement and leaving the premises. So, residents are allowed to leave and leave their homes only when necessary.

Restrictions in Ukraine

Main Restrictions:

  1. Metro does not work
  2. Shopping centers, restaurants, gyms, entertainment centers are closed
  3. More than 10 people on public transport aren’t allowed
  4. Trains and transport between city

Banks, pharmacies,gas stations and supermarkets are working!

Penalty for violation of restrictions in Ukraine is 17-34 thousand hryvnias

 

Guarantees of rights

The Ministry of Health of Ukraine has sent to the regions recommendations for postponement of planned operations and provision of other medical services to prevent the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus in Ukraine. Also, they assure that all medical services, which do not pose a serious risk to life and development of life-threatening conditions or may lead to the development of critical conditions, should be provided in full and on time.

Also, EVERY person is allowed to get tested on the COVID-19 and buy a speed test in the pharmacie.

Legal aspects

Coronavirus Legislation

By order of the government dated January 31st, 2020 No. 66 coronavirus infection (2019-nCoV) was included in the list of diseases that pose a danger to others.

The most significant measures to combat the threat of the spread of coronavirus infection have been taken in different countries. In all countries, a high alert regime has been introduced with the active involvement of the police and medical organizations in monitoring and controlling the situation.

From 03.03.2020, the decree determined the countries with the most unfavorable situations, arriving from which it is necessary to ensure self-isolation at home for a period of 14 days. These countries include China, South Korea, Iran, Italy, France, Germany, and Spain. It is currently not necessary to comply with the quarantine regime after returning from other countries.

While this list remains unchanged, however, it is regularly updated, and other countries may be included in it.

After returning from countries where cases of a new coronavirus infection are simply registered, including those not included in the specified list, citizens are obliged to inform about their return to their country, place, dates of stay in these territories.

The decree also obliges employers to assist workers in ensuring compliance with the regime of self-isolation at home, as well as to provide temperature measurements to employees with the mandatory removal of people with fever from the workplace.

Quarantine in Ukraine implies a number of rules of conduct that should minimize the risks of coronavirus spread. In this regard, in case of violation of the rules, fines will be issued to Ukrainians, and criminal liability is also possible.

BP voted to strengthen accountability for violation of observational rules and intentional infection with coronavirus. This was told in the press service of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Ukraine on Facebook.

“Today (March 17th), The Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine supported the strengthening of responsibility for violating observational rules and intentionally infecting other people. Administrative and criminal liability is provided for such actions,” the Interior Ministry wrote.

Reportedly, violation of quarantine rules and regulations is punishable by a fine of 17 to 51,000 hryvnias. If such actions led or could lead to the spread of the disease – arrest for 6 months or restriction, or imprisonment for 3 years. If a violation of the observational rules resulted in death or other serious consequences, the offender is provided for from 5 to 8 years in prison.

Fines for violation of quarantine:

  • Great Britan (failure to pass the test)

£1000

  • Slovakia (self-isolation)

€1659

  • Austria (self-isolation)

€2180

  • Czech Repablic (self-isolation)

<€10000

  • Canada ( risk of disease spread)

<$1000000 or 3 years imprisonment

  • Italy (self-isolation)

€206 or < 3 month imprisonment

  • Russia (self-isolation)

$1000 or 1 year imprisonment

  • China (self-isolation, risk of contracting a healthcare)

criminal liability for the death penalty

  • USA (self-isolation)

<$10000 or 10 month imprisonment

  • Australia (self-isolation)

$10000

  • Ukraine (self-isolation)

<$630 or < 5 years imprisonment

  • South Korea (self-isolation)

<$8000

Suggestions

There is currently no vaccine to prevent coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) so the best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to this virus.

The virus is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person.

    • Between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet).
    • Through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes.

These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs

TAKE STEPS TO PROTECT YOURSELF

  1. CLEAN YOUR HANDS OFTEN

Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds especially after you have been in a public place, or after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing. If soap and water are not available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. Cover all surfaces of your hands and rub them together until they feel dry. Moreover, avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.

2. AVOID CLOSE CONTACT

Avoid close contact with people who are sick. Put distance between yourself and other people if COVID-19 is spreading in your community. This is especially important for people who are at higher risk of getting very sick.

3. STAY HOME IF YOU ARE SICK

Stay home if you are sick, except to get medical care.

4. COVER COUGH AND SNEEZES

  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze or use the inside of your elbow.
  • Throw used tissues in the trash.
  • Immediately wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, clean your hands with a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.

5. WEAR A FACEMASK IF YOU ARE SICK

  • If you are sick: You should wear a facemask when you are around other people (e.g., sharing a room or vehicle) and before you enter a healthcare provider’s office. If you are not able to wear a facemask (for example, because it causes trouble breathing), then you should do your best to cover your coughs and sneezes, and people who are caring for you should wear a facemask if they enter your room.
  • If you are NOT sick: You do not need to wear a facemask unless you are caring for someone who is sick (and they are not able to wear a facemask). Facemasks may be in short supply and they should be saved for caregivers.

6. CLEAN AND DISINFECT

Clean AND disinfect frequently touched surfaces daily. This includes tables, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, handles, desks, phones, keyboards, toilets, faucets, and sinks. If surfaces are dirty, clean them: Use detergent or soap and water prior to disinfection.

Conclusion

The authorities have introduced quarantine. Restricted mode of transport, closed cafes, bars, restaurants. Unfortunately, many take these measures lightly and neglect established anti-epidemic rules and personal protective measures. The situation is extremely serious. Do not compromise your health and that of your loved ones.

Note: Quarantine is not a vacation or vacation. If you did not go to work, it does not mean that you should visit friends. We insist that you stay home. Self-isolation is the new life philosophy of all conscious people around the world. Do not be indifferent to friends and acquaintances. Promote your home mode by all means. Simple things save lives!

The authorities are taking the right steps and, if necessary, we will introduce a more stringent regime. Even if someone does not like it. Under the threat of an invisible enemy, all government agencies are synchronized in enhanced mode.

The humanity will continue to fight against the pandemic virus and will find vaccine as soon as possible. Take care of yourself, stay calm, and consume information from trusted sources.

 

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