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Croatian Gov. Finally Provides Instructions For Visitors Who May Have COVID-19

The Croatian Institute of Public Health finally published detailed instructions in the case of the infection of tourists in Croatia.
The Croatian Institute of Public Health finally published detailed instructions in the case of the infection of tourists in Croatia.

June 20, 2020 — A foreign guest in Croatia who tests positive for COVID-19 will be isolated in designated facilities until a doctor gives them the all-clear, while domestic tourists will be sent home using their own transport.

More than 130,000 tourists are currently staying in Croatia soon after the country opened its borders a few weeks ago. Yet the national authorities did not issue protocols for infected tourists until Friday, when Istria's authorities gave up on waiting.

The Istrian Civil Protection Directorate took matters into its own hands and announced that all towns and municipalities in Istria must determine possible accommodation that will serve for quarantine and self-isolation of tourists with possible coronavirus infection.

Stating that they have been waiting for three weeks for a protocol from the National Directorate on what to do in case of sick tourists, given that there are already more than 40,000 tourists in Istria, they decided to make the decision on their own.

Shortly after this announcement by the Istrian Headquarters, the Croatian Institute of Public Health finally published detailed instructions in the case of the infection of tourists in Croatia. Here are some of the key points:

  • Foreign tourists who are confirmed with coronavirus will immediately be transferred to a designated health institution, while domestic tourists, if they have no symptoms, are sent to isolation at home, by their own transport.

  • Foreign guests who are the patient's contacts may return to their home countries before the expiration of the patient's isolation, after consultation with the health authorities.

  • Employees in the accommodation where an infected tourist was accommodated, who are also infected, must be subjected to hospital treatment or isolation. Employees whose disease has not been confirmed and who have been in contact with an infected tourist must be isolated.

  • Local authorities must secure the infrastructure, transport, testing areas and additional capacity needed for potentially sick tourists. They must also add contact information for health services on their official sites.

  • Hosts must inform the relevant local doctor of a potentially-infected guest. If the doctor suspects COVID-19, hosts must provide a medical mask and tissues, asking the tourist to remain isolated in their rental unit until a doctor provides further instruction.

  • The suspected COVID patient's companions — family, fellow travelers — must also remain in isolation in their rooms, separate from the suspected patient.

  • Doctors will use their discretion in checking guests in requiring further testing, including a nasal swab to confirm coronavirus infection.

  • Guests ordered into isolation will have to handle house cleaning duties on their own, including the cleaning of linens and clothing. Those without a working kitchen will have to order takeout.

  • If the test comes back negative, doctors will offer treatment and end the isolation orders.

  • Confirmed COVID-19 cases that require hospitalization will be transported to the nearest medical facility capable of housing and isolating them.

  • Those with mild symptoms or none at all will be moved to a designated facility meant for isolation, which will be equipped to handle such cases.

  • Doctors will make a final call on when a patient's isolation will end.

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