More than 18 months into the coronavirus pandemic, a number of countries have decided it is time to open up and adopt a “live with Covid” model.
Some have enviable vaccination rates; others have decided that the costs of continuing economic and social constraints outweigh the benefits.
But what are the countries that have decided to live with the pandemic?
Denmark: The country that declared the precautionary measures
The Danish government lifted all remaining coronavirus restrictions in the country on September 10, saying Covid-19 was no longer “a disease which is a critical threat to society.”
Singapore: Trying to live with Covid, but Delta is not helping
The Singapore government announced in June that it was planning to move towards a lifestyle with the Covid strategy – trying to control vaccine outbreaks and monitor hospitalizations instead of limiting the lives of citizens.
Authorities began easing some restrictions in August, allowing fully vaccinated people to dine at restaurants and gather in groups of five, out of two.
Thailand: Slow vaccination, but still opening up
Thailand plans to reopen Bangkok and other popular destinations for foreign visitors next month, officials said last week as the Southeast Asian nation struggles to revive its main tourism industry despite rising infections.
Under the expanded program, tourists who are fully vaccinated against Covid-19 and commit to a testing regimen will be allowed to enter the capital, Hua Hin, Pattaya and Chiang Mai, according to Reuters.
South Africa: Easing restrictions, but Delta is still a threat
South Africa has begun easing some restrictions on Covid-19 as infection rates in the country decline.
Among other measures, overnight nationwide curfews have been shortened to 11pm to 4am, the size of permitted rallies has been increased to 250 people inside and 500 outside, and restrictions on alcohol sales have been further reduced.
Chile: High vaccination rate means tourists can return
Chile has been internationally acclaimed for its smooth and successful vaccination campaign. According to recent reports from the health ministry, nearly 87% of qualified Chileans are fully vaccinated.
The country has already started distributing booster vaccines to those who are fully vaccinated. Health authorities on Thursday approved the use of the Chinese Sinovac vaccine for children aged six and older; vaccinations began Monday.
Despite the threat posed by the Delta variant, the government on Wednesday announced moves to reopen the country for international tourism from October 1, just in time for the southern hemisphere nation’s summer season.
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