Updated 1st April 2020
1st April Peru has 1323 cases of coronavirus COVID-19. There have been 30 deaths.
198 are currently in hospital, of which 56 are in intensive care on mechanical ventilators.
Over 15587 suspected cases have been tested. The original patient, case zero, has now recovered fully. The Head of the National Health Insitute said on the 30th that they are carrying out over 2000 molecular tests for COVID-19 per day. They will be run by Essalud which is the national health service here in Peru. The first phase has 900 beds available.
1st April Economic plan with valué of 12 points of Gross Domestic Product
The Economic Minister, defended the Government’s decision not to release 25% of AFP pension funds. She said they have a very ambitious plan, which will cost 12 points of Gross Domestic Product and such a measure would not leave Peru with the stability to implement this plan.
1st April How will Peru protect women who are at risk from being confined with a dangerous partner?
During the period of quarantine, the special Number set up to report domestic violence has received 5418 calls about domestic violence. Special teams have been sent out to 538 cases, resulting in that 25 women and their children were taken to safe houses. The Minister of Women, also reported that saldo there had been 43 rapes reported, including some to children in their own homes.
1st April Remote education in Peru to get schools started
In order to not lose too much of the school year, school will happen by remote means, until it is possible to reopen schools, which will not happen until May at the earliest.
Children will be able to access a series of educational resources vía radio, tv, and mobile phone- with free access to an official education site that will not use data on your phone or computer.
The President said that while it will not be easy, and that not everyone can do virtual education, as not everyone has internet access, let alone a computer, hence why they are starting with “remote” education. He said it is a great opportunity to advance the education in Peru for the future.
Remote áreas that will receive school books and materials along with the food supplies that are being delivered.
1st April Lima converts bullfighting ring into temporary shelter for the homeless
1st April: Withdrawals from pension fund AFP to be allowed up to 2000 soles
Anyone who has not been “en planilla” or on the books of a company for the last six months, will be able to withdraw up to 2000 soles from their pension fund. This will apply to 3 million people, roughly half of the total who have pension funds in the AFPs.
1 400 000 will be able to withdraw the whole amount in their account, as they do not have more than 2000 soles total in their pension fund.
Those who are still working have the option to not contribute to their pension fund in April or May, thus retaining an extra 10% of their wage in these two months.
Amid calls from some politicians to allow everyone to withdraw 25% of their AFP or pension fund, the President defended the position of the Finance Minister who explained that this is not a viable option- as a massive cash withdrawal would have a huge effect on the value of the 75% that remained in the pension funds.
The president explained that they have to choose who can benefit from this- so better to choose those who most need it. The amount released so that 3 million people can withdraw up to 2000 soles each is equal to what would be released if the just the top 20,000 earners in Peru were allowed to withdraw 25% of their pension funds.
He continued that the pension system needs a reform and they intend to do so after the crisis has passed.
31st March Shop to open only between 7am and 4pm
This is so people are back in their homes before curfew. In the areas where the curfew starts at 2pm, the shops will close at 2pm.
30th March- Hours of curfew extended
The curfew will be extended. Originally in effect between 8 pm and 5 am, there have been 36,000 people detained for failing to comply. The curfew is now going to start at 6 pm in all of Peru- except for four regions where it will start at 4 pm- because they were the regions least complying: Tumbes, Piura, Loreto and La Libertad. Anyone caught not complying could face charges.
30th March Two hospitals opened in Lima for COVID-19 cases
Two buildings, built for the Pan-American games in 2019 have been transformed into hospitals to house patients suffering from coronavirus.
27th Peru to announce a financial package to protect the economy
The president said that there are more economic measures on the way to help businesses and their workers, in order to help the economy recover from the situation.
26th Domestic isolation to be extended in Peru until April 12th
The president said the decision to extend by 13 days, is based on the reports from health officials.
26th Workers will be allowed to withdraw CTS
The CTS is a savings fund, and part of your wage is automatically paid into this. The idea is that if you then lose your job, you have some money to tide you over until you find another job. In the current situation, many have lost their jobs or had their hours and wages cut. The president said that they are allowing people to withdraw up to 2400 soles. If they have lost their job, they were already entitled to take it all.
26th Government will pay 35% of wages of any employee earning less than 1500 soles per month
Announced in today’s presidential address.
25th Repatriation flights arriving to take home tourists stranded in Peru
The Peruvian Chancellor announced that two flights are arriving from the US today. The US said it will prioritize those in greater need.
The British Embassy said yesterday the first “humanitarian” flight to take people back to the UK will arrive today.
Canada took some citizens home yesterday. Various other nationalities have already evacuated many of their citizens.
This despite the fact that Peru closed its borders completely on the 22nd, except for cargo planes. Flights are coming in via the military airport in Lima, as Lima’s international airport Jorge Chavez, has been closed since Sunday.
21st March All borders to close completely from midnight
While the borders had been closed for a few days, it was announced things would be even stricter.
Peru suffered its first 3 deaths today from COVID-19. The first death was of a 78-year-old man, with high blood pressure; a 47-year-old man who suffered from bronchial asthma and obesity and a 69-year-old, who also had pre-existing medical conditions. The 47-year-old and 69-year-old had both returned from Spain recently.
19th March President announces updates on the situation of coronavirus in Peru
- The number of cases of COVID-19 has increased to 234 in Peru
- Peru has bought 1,600,000 testing kits, of which 1,400,000 are rapid testing kits
- 2 planes from Mexico, 1 from Israel and 1 from Chile have already taken tourists home
- 4 planes from Israel, 1 from Chile, 1 from Argentina and 1 from Mexico are programmed to arrive soon
- Minister is traveling to Cusco today to co-ordinate the situation of stranded tourists
- 477 people were detained last night for breaking the curfew, of which 152 were in Lima and Callao
- Hospital Até will be ready on 21 March, for serious cases, with 50 beds in the intensive care unit
18th March Peru announces curfew
18th March Peru will enforce a curfew between 8 pm and 5 am, starting tonight The President said this is because, despite the please, some people are still going out at night and socializing in groups. Especially youngsters. And some of these have caught COVID-29
The police and military will be ensuring people respect the curfew
The President said,
” You ask if this is a curfew. For some people, this carries bad memories. This is an obligatory, social immobilization. If you want to call it a curfew, fine.”
18th March Private cars to be banned from circulating in Peru
Private cars will not be allowed to circulate from 5 am 19th March. In effect, they will not be allowed from 8 pm tonight as that is when the nighttime curfew comes in. And then the ban on cars starts at 5 am valid 24 hours a day until the end of the state of emergency. The curfew ends each morning, private vehicles will be allowed to circulate only until.
Again the president emphasized this was only introduced because people were not respecting the need to stay at home.
Peru enters 3rd stage of COVID-19, community transmission
17 March. President announced coronavirus in Peru is at the stage of community transmission. That not all people who have caught it, have come back from Europe or have been in contact with people that have been in Europe. In other words, it is been spread from person to person within Peru.
Any tourists stuck in Peru and trying to get home
18th March- Ministers announces flights to take tourists out have arrived from Mexico and Israel. Others are still being negotiated
If you are a British national- the FCO is updating on the situation here. The British Embassy in Lima is asking you email email@example.com with your full name, location (be specific) and best form of contact ( ideally email)
If you are any other nationality- please check your specific government/ embassy page.
Peru declares state of emergency
Sunday 15th March, the President announced a state of emergency for the whole of Peru with effect from midnight.
Measures include Peru’s border closures and domestic isolation.
Peru goes into domestic lockdown
The announcement means everyone must stay in their homes, except for a few exceptions- to go to buy groceries or medicines, go to the bank or fill their car up with petrol. Going to work and then back home again is also allowed, but employers are encouraged to implement home working.
Peru closes borders
Peru will close all international borders at 23.59 Monday 16th March, except for the import and export of goods.
What does Peru’s “State of Emergency” mean?
Certain civil liberties and rights are suspended. And the police and military have the power to enforce it.
1. Everyone must stay at home from midnight tonight (bar some exceptions)
2. All international borders closed from 23.59 Monday 16th for 15 days.
Except for the import and export of goods and merchandise
3. Bars, restaurants, parks, and most public spaces are all closed
What does the State of Emergency in Peru mean for tourists?
Tourists are subject to the same rules as everyone else in this case.
How long will the State of Emergency in Peru last?
It is due to last 15 days. This may be extended.
Under what circumstances are you allowed out of your house/ hotel?
You are allowed out into the street in order to use or provide the following services
- Purchasing food or medicines
- Banks and financial services
- Medical centers, hospitals, etc for urgent cases or emergencies
- Help/care for the elderly, children, teenagers, people with disabilities or in vulnerable situations
- Return home
- Rubbish collection and cleaning
- To return to your home
- Hotels and accommodations but only to comply with quarantine
Peru`s government has assured there is not going to be a shortage of food or goods
Those working in the production and supply of food and other essentials are allowed to continue going to work, in order to ensure there is a continuous supply of food and essential items for all.
That is all I know for now. It is drastic, but the law has been passed, so all we can do is comply with it and hope it has the desired effect.
Developments leading up to the State of Emergency in Peru
14 March: FCO advises against travel to Peru due to the flight ban
FCO changed its Peru travel advice in light of the coronavirus outbreak. Advising British nationals not to travel to Peru (and also to various other countries) due to the problems they will have if restrictions mean they are unable to get home.
Peru announced it is suspending all flights to and from Europe and Asia to stop the spread of COVID-19.
This Peru travel ban starts on Monday 16th March. It will last for 30 days initially, with the option to extend.
It covers any flights, between Peru and Europe. And any flights between Peru and Asia (not that there are any direct flights between Peru and Asia). In both cases, it covers both inbound and outbound flights.
Technically it is not a “travel ban”- the language the government used is “suspension of flights”. They are not “banning” people from any place or of any nationality, merely making it almost impossible for people to get to Peru from Europe or Asia.
Is the Inca Trail closed?
Yes. The Inca Trail closed two weeks early in January due to a landslide at Winay Wayna campsite. It closes each February for maintenance. It was then announced the opening would be delayed until 16th March. But the state of emergency in Peru means it has not yet opened and we are not sure when it will open.
Yes, Machu Picchu is closed as part of the State of Emergency declared 15th March.
15 March: A “State of Emergency” is declared, with obligatory domestic isolation for all and closing of borders
15 March: Peru closes ports to all cruise ships
Peru announced cruise ships will not be allowed to dock in Peruvian ports. Cargo ships are still allowed in and out
15 March: Lima councils close more beaches and parks
Various Lima municipalities (councils) have announced the closure of their beaches and parks. Lurin, Punta Hermosa and San Bartolo today followed Callao in announcing this.
15 March: Government minister says domestic quarantine for all is being considered
14th FCO updates travel advice to avoid all but necessary travel to Peru
It offers the same advice for various other countries because of the increasing complexity of world travel restrictions and increase of flight bans
14th March Beaches closed by some Lima councils
14th March Cross-sector committee spokesman says closing Peru borders could be an option
13th March Peru Health Minister announces new test centers for coronavirus due to open in April
Currently, all COVID-19 tests have to be sent to Lima for analysis. But regional COVID-19 testing centers are due to open soon
The plan is 14th April Tumbes and Iquitos. 16th April Cusco and La Libertad. 18th April Piura and San Martin. 22nd April Ica, Ucayali and Jaen. Clearly much can happen in a month.
13th March First case of coronavirus in Cusco
The 37-year-old local man, who became the first Cusco COVID-19 case is thought to have contracted the coronavirus on a recent trip to Washington DC, in the USA. He is in domestic isolation and in a stable condition.
13th March 16 new cases
12th March Peru announces a ban on all flights to and from Europe and Asia
12th March Peru closes all universities in addition to the schools which were already closed
12th March 5 new cases of coronavirus in Peru were confirmed
21-year-old who had been in Italy, a 28-year-old who had been in Germany and Spain, and a 25-year-old, 49-year-old and 63 years old. They did not say where these last 3 had been.
12th March Peru announces banning of the gathering of more than 300 persons
11th March: Another 4 cases were confirmed later in the day
11th March: Peru announces travel restrictions for those traveling from 4 European countries
11th March: Peru closes schools as a precaution till 30th March
All schools will close until 30th March. Both private and state schools.
11th March: 2 new cases of COVID-19 coronavirus in Chincha to the south of Lima
A 46-year-old man and a 27-year-old man. Both said to be stable and in isolation in their homes
10th March: 2 cases of coronavirus were confirmed in Huanaco, Peru.
A pair of brothers, aged 27 and 15 who had returned from Europe. Again they are said to be stable and in domestic isolation.
9th March: Arequipa puts all medical staff on standby
As a result, on the 9th March, the city of Arequipa has put all medical staff on alert and banned them for taking holidays for 3 months. This is in order to be prepared for any new cases that appear.
9th March: 2 more cases of coronavirus were confirmed in Peru, in Lima.
Both new cases are related to the case zero ( i.e. the first confirmed case in Peru)
8th March: 1 case of COVID-19 confirmed in Arequipa
This is an independent case from the Lima ones. A 29-year-old male, who had traveled from London at the end of February. He too is in a stable condition and quarantined in his home.
8th March: 5 more cases of COVID-19 confirmed in Lima
All had contact with case zero. These include a 7-year-old boy who goes to Newton College, a prestigious independent school in Lima. Newton College has taken the decision to suspend classes until 20th March. However, the child did attend school first.
6th March: Peru confirmed its first case of coronavirus COVID-19- case zero
A 25-year-old man, he tested positive in Lima after traveling in Spain, France, and the Czech Republic. The man works for LATAM airlines, who were quick to point out that he did not travel back from Europe on their airline, and has not gone to work since being back. They said he has not been in contact with any other LATAM employees.
12th March Peru had tested 883 people for coronavirus
On the 12th March MINSA, the Peruvian Ministry of Health announced, that up to the date, they had tested 883 people for coronavirus. All but 22 proving negative.
The first suspected cases in Peru came at the end of February when 4 Chinese tourists were tested in Lima with suspicion of having coronavirus, but the results were all negative.
25 March 480 cases, 9 deaths
24 March 416 cases, 7 deaths
23 March 395 cases
22 March 363 cases
21 March 318 cases
20 March: 263 cases, 4 deaths
19 March First 3 deaths in Peru from COVID-19
19 March: 234 cases of COVID-19 in Peru
18 March: 145 cases
17 March: 117 cases in Peru
16 March: 15 new coronavirus cases confirmed in Peru
15 March: 18 new cases
14th March 5 new coronavirus cases confirmed in Peru
As of 24th March, these are the confirmed cases of coronavirus in South America:
Brazil has 4330 (140 deaths), Ecuador 1924 (58 death), Peru 852 (18 deaths), Argentina 820 (22 deaths), Colombia 702 (10 death) , Uruguay 304 (1 death), Venezuela 129 (3 deaths), Bolivia 96 (4 deaths), Paraguay 64 (1 deaths), French Guiana 43 (6 deaths), Guyana 8 (1 death) and Suriname 8
The first case of coronavirus in South America was the 26th of February, in Brazil.
13th March- Uruguay confirms first 4 cases of coronavirus
13th March- Suriname confirms the first case
13th March- Venezuela confirms first 2 cases
11th March- Guyana confirms the first case of and death from COVID-19.
10th March Bolivia confirmed it’s first 2 cases of COVID-19
7th March Paraguay confirmed its first case each of coronavirus.
6th March Peru and Colombia confirmed their first case each of coronavirus.
4th March French Guiana confirmed its first cases of coronavirus
On the 29th February 2020, Ecuador confirmed its first case of coronavirus
On 26th February Brazil has confirmed the first case of coronavirus in South America– someone who had returned from an affected area in Italy.
The Economic cost of COVID-19 on Peru
We will only be able to see the true economic cost of coronavirus to tourism in Peru with time.
11th March, Canatur, the Peruvian Chamber of Tourism, warned the consequences of any quarantine will be massive for the tourism industry in Peru.
They predicted it could mean losses of up to U$ 500 million dollars for the Peruvian tourist industry. The fact that the government then decided to completely ban flights from Europe and Asia, will only make it worse.
This article in Spanish about the effect of coronavirus on tourism from China to Peru has made some calculations. Remember coronavirus started in China, so travelers from China are currently the most likely to be canceling their trips anywhere.
To translate it briefly:
2019 saw 50, 000 Chinese tourists visit Peru. Spending an average of 1200 U$ dollars each, or a combined total of 56 million U$ dollars. The article dated 7th February says that up to then, 5000 Chinese travelers had canceled their trips. More are expected to cancel.
Read the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention´s FAQS about coronavirus. They explain it very simply.
In short, coronaviruses have been around for years. Most do not cause big problems to humans- for instance, a common cold. Most only exist among animals. Some, such as the SARS coronavirus has caused problems for humans. This new strain of coronavirus is called COVID-19- short for Coronavirus Disease 2019, which is when it was discovered. It is believed to have come from animals, much like SARS which broke out across the world in 2003.
Coronavirus COVID-19 can cause acute respiratory disease which if you are a very unlucky human, can kill you. Current figures suggest that there is a 1-2% fatality rate amongst those that contract coronavirus.
However- experts believe some people are more at risk than others.
A report suggests half those who have died in Wuhan, where the disease originated, were already suffering from existing conditions, mainly either high blood pressure or diabetes.
To protect yourself and others against coronavirus
As a kid, you were probably taught how to avoid spreading “germs”. This is exactly the advice being given to prevent the spread of coronavirus:
* Cover your mouth when you sneeze or cough and do so into a tissue, then throw it in the bin
* No the back of your sleeve or a handkerchief is not an adequate replacement for a tissue.
*Stay away from the person who is coughing and sneezing all over the place.
*Wash your hands well with soap and water for 30 seconds immediately after
*Spray your hands with alcohol as an extra precaution (some say alcohol gel is not effective)
*Don’t poke your fingers into your eyes, nose, mouth.
*Avoid sharing cups/ drinking bottles/ cutlery etc. Avoid putting your hands into plates of food
*Stay at home if you are sick to avoid spreading it.
Sadly not everyone seems to adhere to that advice in day to day life. But that is the advice being given to stop the spread of this coronavirus.
You do not need to walk around in a facemask unless a doctor tells you to. Or unless you are someone, such as a doctor, nurse, dentist, health official, coming into close contact with lots of people. For most of us, they have deemed it not necessary.
This article tries to clear up some of the confusion and myths about coronavirus.
While the obvious thing to think about is tourism, many other industries are affected. For instance, 85% of the squid fished in Peru is exported to China. This has currently been stopped.
Exports from mining from Peru to China are a huge part of the Peruvian economy. These and many other industries will be affected. This article takes a deeper look at the economic effect coronavirus may have on Peru and Latin America.
Remember coronavirus does not kill everyone that catches it. Statistics are saying between 1 and 2% of people who actually contract it die. Most who contract it only do so in a mild form. And of those who are unlucky and do die, the majority are either elderly or have an underlying condition.
You can see up to date figures for coronavirus across the world here. On 9th March, this is showing 113,603 confirmed cases, with 63,625 recovered and 4012 deaths. The rest are still in process.
How does this compare to other causes of death?
There are 281 million cases of malaria each year of which 405,000 die
1.35 million people die worldwide each year in road traffic accidents (2016 figure)
102 people per day die in road traffic accidents in the USA (average in 2016)
How many people die each year anyway?
Figures from the United Nations World Mortality Report published in 2017 ( figures for 2015). Sourced from this article.
56 million people died across the world
155,000 died per day on average
6,500 died per hour on average
Currently, there have been less than 5000 deaths worldwide from COVID-19. Total. That is less than a days’ worth of deaths in a normal year.
Europe and the US have more cases of coronavirus than Peru. This live, interactive coronavirus map shows the current number of confirmed coronavirus cases for each country.
The restrictions that are being brought in in Peru are aiming to keep it that way
The importance of traveling again in the future?
You cannot travel to Peru at the moment.
But once everything returns to normal- Peru needs you to come to visit.
Tourism gives sustainable employment to a lot of people here in Peru and elsewhere. It provides a more sustainable alternative to illegal mining and illegal logging. It also allows people to lift themselves out of poverty, to gain education for their children, avoid malnutrition and more. It helps preserve life in so many ways.
Check the foreign office advice given by your country.27