CDC places Nordic favorite and 2 other locations on ‘high’ risk list for Covid-19

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(CNN) — JThe US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has put a northern travel favorite on its “high” risk list for Covid-19, along with two other locations.

Representing three continents, the three destinations added to the list on Tuesday are:

• Guatemala
• Morocco
• Sweden

Level 3, or “high”, is now the first rung in terms of risk level and applies to places that have recorded more than 100 cases per 100,000 population in the past 28 days. Levels 2 and 1 are considered “moderate” and “low” risk respectively.

The three new entries at level 3 on Tuesday were previously at level 2.

Sweden, renowned for its culture and natural beauty, is one of the few European countries to come off the “high” risk list since the ratings overhaul. Along with Romania, it moved to the “moderate” risk list in June. 21. This week, Romania remains at Level 2.

There were nearly 115 destinations at Tier 3 on July 5. Level 3 locations make up nearly half of the approximately 235 locations monitored by the CDC.

Level 4, previously the highest risk category, is now reserved only for special circumstances, such as an extremely high number of cases, the emergence of a new variant of concern or the collapse of healthcare infrastructures. health. Under the new system, no destinations have been placed at Tier 4 so far.

Learn more about level 3

The village of Oia on the island of Santorini is a favorite tourist spot in Greece, which remains at CDC level 3.

Francesco Riccardo Iacomino/Moment RF/Getty Images

Much of Europe has been stubbornly lodged in Level 3 for months with the summer travel season in full swing. As of July 5, the following popular European destinations were among those remaining at Tier 3:

• France
• Germany
• Greece
• Ireland
• Italy
• The Netherlands
• Norway
• Portugal
• Spain
• UK

These aren’t the only high-profile locations that fall into Level 3. Many other destinations around the world fall into the “high” risk category, including:

• Brazil
• Canada
•Costa Rica
• Malaysia
• Mexico
• South Korea
• Thailand
• Turkey

The CDC advises that you get up to date with your Covid-19 vaccines before traveling to a Tier 3 destination. are eligible.

Level 2

Baalbek is a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Lebanon, which passed to the CDC's

Baalbek is a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Lebanon, which has been upgraded to the CDC’s “moderate” risk category.

Luis Dafos/Moment RF/Getty Images

Destinations with the designation “Tier 2: Moderate Covid-19” have reported 50 to 100 cases of Covid-19 per 100,000 population in the past 28 days. The CDC moved three places at this level on Tuesday:

• Jordan
• Lebanon
• North Macedonia

This decision was not good news for Jordan and Lebanon in the Middle East, which were in level 1. For North Macedonia in the European Balkans, the decision was a positive step, having previously been in level 3 .

There are 20 places in the “moderate” risk category this week.

In its broader travel guidelines, the CDC recommended avoiding all international travel until you are fully immunized.

Level 1

To be listed as “Tier 1: Covid-19 Low”, a destination must have recorded 49 or fewer new cases per 100,000 inhabitants in the last 28 days. Only two small island destinations were added to the category on July 5:

• Saba
• Saint Pierre and Miquelon

Saba, in the Caribbean, was at level 2. Saint-Pierre-et-Miquelon, a French archipelago south of Newfoundland, Canada, was at level 3.

Indonesia, India and the Philippines are among the most popular places in the “low” risk category this week.

Unknown

The Hungarian Parliament is seen through the arches of the Fisherman's Bastion in Budapest.  CDC warns against travel to places where Covid-19 risk is

The Hungarian Parliament is seen through the arches of the Fisherman’s Bastion in Budapest. CDC warns against travel to places where Covid-19 risk is “unknown”.

Alexander Spatari/Moment RF/Getty Images

Finally, there are the destinations the CDC has deemed “unknown” risk due to a lack of information. Usually, but not always, these are small, remote places or places where war or unrest is going on. Four places were added to this category this week:

• Haiti
• Hungary
• Iran
• Mozambique

Haiti, Iran and Mozambique were all at Level 1 last week. Hungary, a favorite stop on the Eastern European tourist circuit, was in Tier 3.

The CDC advises against travel to these places precisely because the risks are unknown. Other destinations in this category that generally attract more attention from tourists include French Polynesia, Macau and the Maldives.

Medical expert weighs in on risk levels

Transmission rates are just a “benchmark” for travelers’ personal risk calculations, according to CNN medical analyst Dr. Leana Wen.

We have entered “a phase of the pandemic where people have to make their own decisions based on their medical situation as well as their risk tolerance when it comes to contracting Covid-19,” said Wen, who is an emergency physician and professor. in Health Policy and Management at the George Washington University Milken Institute School of Public Health.

There are other factors to weigh in addition to transmission rates, according to Wen.

“Another is what precautions are needed and followed where you are going, and then the third is what you plan to do once you get there,” she said.

“Are you planning on visiting a lot of attractions and going to indoor bars? It’s very different from going somewhere where you plan to lay on the beach all day and not interact with anyone outside. “other. It’s very different. It’s very different levels of risk.”

Vaccination is the most important safety factor for travel, as unvaccinated travelers are more likely to get sick and transmit Covid-19 to others, Wen said.

And it’s also important to think about what you would do if you became positive outside of your home.

“Of course, if people have symptoms or are exposed while traveling, they should get tested and, if positive, follow CDC’s isolation guidelines,” Wen told CNN Travel recently.
If you are concerned about a travel-specific health situation not related to Covid-19, check here.

Top image: The island of Tjorn off the west coast of Sweden. (Peter Adams/Stone RF/Getty Images)

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