CDC moves Mexico from ‘high’ risk level for Covid-19

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(CNN) – The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention lowered the risk of Covid-19 travel to one of the most popular destinations in the Western Hemisphere on Monday.

Mexico was downgraded to a level on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) scale of “high” to “medium” risk on May 2, along with four other places around the world.

Tourism is an important part of the country’s economy, and Mexico has had some of the world’s most flexible border restrictions throughout the pandemic. There are no vaccination or testing requirements for the visit.

There was not much movement overall on Monday on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s guidance list, although a major tourism hub in the Middle East, Egypt, was placed in the “unknown” risk category. The CDC is putting a destination there when it hasn’t received enough data in the past seven days to make an evaluation.

The CDC recently overhauled its classification system.

The “High” level 3 risk category is now the first in terms of the level of risk. Level 2 is considered “moderate” risk, and level 1 is considered “low” risk.

Level 4 is now reserved only for special circumstances. Under the new system, no destination has been placed at level 4 yet.

3 . level

Pedestrians cross the Champs Elysees in front of the Arc de Triomphe monument in Paris on April 29, 2022. France is at level 3, or “high” risk of contracting Covid-19.

– / AFP / AFP via Getty Images

In the new CDC system, the “high” level 3 risk category applies to destinations with more than 100 cases per 100,000 residents in the past 28 days.

Mexico was moved from this category, and there were no new additions to Tier 3 on May 2. However, much of Europe still resides there as the summer travel season approaches than ever.

On May 2, some popular European tier 3 countries still include:

• France
• Germany
• Greece
• Ireland
• Italia
• Holland
• Portugal
• Spain
• United kingdom

It’s not just European favorites that find themselves at level 3. Other popular travel spots around the world that are at high risk include:

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

There are over 110 destinations in Level 3 this week. Level 3 sites represent nearly half of the approximately 235 places monitored by the CDC.

The CDC advises that you be up to date on your Covid-19 vaccinations before traveling to a Tier 3 destination. The term “updated” includes not only full initial vaccinations, but also any boosters for which you are eligible.
The CDC does not include the United States on its guidance list, but on its color-coded map of the world, the CDC was at level 3 on Monday.

Level 2

Destinations rated “Level 2: Moderate Covid-19” have reported 50 to 100 Covid-19 cases per 100,000 residents in the past 28 days. five Destinations were moved to that level on Monday. They are:

• Antigua and Barbuda
• Belize
• Mexico
• Taiwan
• Iran

The move was not good news for Taiwan, which has been one of the bright spots for most of the epidemic. He was at level 1.

One of the last hurdles in keeping its borders closed to tourism, the island has been easing some kinds of travel restrictions in the past two months. However, leisure travel is still out of the question here at the moment and many other destinations in Asia.

This move was good news for the other four places on this list, which were at level 3.

In its broader travel advisory, the CDC has recommended that you avoid international travel until you’ve been fully vaccinated.
If you are concerned about a health condition not related to Covid-19, check here.

Level 1

To be at ‘Level 1: Covid-19 Low’, a destination must have 49 or fewer new cases per 100,000 residents in the past 28 days. Only two destinations were added on May 2nd:

• Botswana
• Indonesia

Botswana, an emerging favorite destination for people on safari, has been little known. Indonesia was previously at level 2.

This level is dominated by destinations in Africa, including Kenya, Rwanda and Senegal. Level 1 had about 55 entries in total this week.

Unknown

Tourists visit the Temple of Hatshepsut in Luxor on April 26, 2022. Egypt was placed in

Tourists visit the Temple of Hatshepsut in Luxor on April 26, 2022. Egypt was placed in the “unknown” risk category on Monday.

Sui Xiankai / Xinhua / Getty Images

Finally, there are destinations where the CDC faces “unknown” risks due to a lack of information. Usually, but not always, these are small, remote places or places with constant war or unrest. The three Monday additions to this category are:

• Egypt
• Guinea
• Paraguay

All three were at level 3.

The CDC advises against travel to these places specifically because the risks are unknown. The Azores, Cambodia and Nicaragua also attract their fair share of visitors in this category.

Medical expert weighs in risk levels

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

We have moved to “a stage in the pandemic where people need to make their own decisions based on their medical conditions as well as their own risk tolerance when it comes to contracting Covid-19,” said Wayne, an emergency physician and university professor. Health Policy and Management at The George Washington University Milken Institute School of Public Health.

Wen said there are other factors that should be weighed in addition to transmission rates.

“The other is what precautions are required and which are followed where you are going, and the third is what you plan to do once you get there.

“Do you plan to visit a lot of attractions and go to indoor bars? This is very different from going somewhere where you plan to lie on the beach all day and not interact with anyone else. This is completely different. These are very different levels of risk.”

Wen said vaccination is the most important safety factor for travel because unvaccinated travelers are more likely to get sick and pass Covid-19 to others.

It’s also important to think about what you’ll do if you end up testing positive away from home. Where would you stay and how easy would it be to take a test back home?

Top image: A photo of a beach in Tulum, Mexico in October 2021 (Photo by Daniel Slim/AFP via Getty Images)

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