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Coronavirus Risk Keeps Citizens From TravelSalem-News.com
Jean Danhong Chen Analyzes How the Coronavirus is Impacting the Travel Capabilities of Chinese Citizens
(SALEM, Ore.) - Chinese citizens around the world have experienced many travel problems as a result of the novel coronavirus. The coronavirus originated in the Chinese city of Wuhan in the Hubei province.
The disease has made a dangerous impact on the people in Hubei province, and it is spreading to other parts of China and neighboring countries.
Unfortunately, the circumstances surrounding the novel coronavirus have caused a great deal of prejudice against Chinese travelers. While sensible screening and quarantine requirements are widely thought of as fair, travel for Chinese citizens has become increasingly challenging as the weeks have gone by.
Jean Danhong Chen, an immigration attorney from San Jose, California details the travel restrictions placed on Chinese nationals and examines the current state of travel for Chinese passport holders.
The Novel CoronavirusThe disease originated in mid-December 2019 in Wuhan, China. Doctors became concerned about the virus as cases increased. The disease is thought to be zoonotic in origin, spreading first from animals to people. Since it is an entirely new mutation of the coronavirus, humans have not yet developed an immune defenses against the disease.
Symptoms include shortness of breath, fever, diarrhea, and upper respiratory problems. Left unchecked, the disease can progress to multi-organ failure, severe pneumonia, and death.
While many patients who contract the disease are recovering, the danger of the disease for older people needs to be highlighted. Many older patients who are prone to pneumonia are at a special level of risk associated with the novel coronavirus.
Travel RestrictionsMany global airlines have completely halted all flights to and from China. These carriers include Delta, Cathay Pacific, and Philippine Airlines. With a dearth of international flights, Chinese nationals find themselves trapped in the country.
Domestic travel within China is also impacted. Hubei Province has been effectively cut off from the rest of the country. Many visitors who arrived in the city to celebrate Chinese New Year are still marooned there.
QuarantinesWhile it is extremely difficult to get in or out of Hubei province at the present time, Chinese citizens should be aware that they are subject to quarantine. The Chinese government has taken quarantines seriously and, in some cases, has forced families into the program. These patients are cared for in central facilities.
Quarantines also apply to international travelers who present with symptoms of the disease. The United States has imposed a 14-day quarantine for anyone returning from Hubei province as well as anyone who shows symptoms of the disease.
It may be that the 14-day quarantine procedures are not good enough since some scientists have begun to warn that the disease can have up to a 24-day incubation period. This means that people who have been screened with no symptoms and released from quarantine can still spread the disease if they become ill.
Cruise ShipsOne particularly troubling development for Chinese citizens is the banning of these citizens from two of the world’s most popular cruise lines. Between Royal Caribbean and Norwegian Cruise Lines, these companies provide 30 percent of the world’s cruise capacity.
When passport holders from China as well as Macau and Hong Kong are banned from cruise ships even if they have not been in mainland China since before the outbreak began, this shows a remarkable level of xenophobia among cruise line executives. It also encourages other people to have dangerously inaccurate perceptions about Chinese citizens.
The Diamond Princess, a large cruise ship holding 2,500 passengers and 1,000 crew, is moored in Yokohama, Japan. As of February 10, 2020, there have been over 130 cases of the novel coronavirus onboard. This includes 20 Americans.
The cruise ships’ quarantine requirements are especially strict, but crew members worry that they will have extra exposure to the virus since they must regularly have contact with members of the public. The cruise ship is uniquely dangerous when it comes to the spread of virulent disease, but there is no reason to ban all citizens of China, Macao, and Hong Kong.
Expect Continued DifficultiesUntil the disease has run its course, Chinese nationals and passport holders should anticipate travel difficulties. Not all of these policies are fair or based on medical facts, but the circumstances require Chinese citizens to have a great deal of patience.
For the foreseeable future until the disease has run its course, Chinese nationals will continue to experience severe travel difficulties and prejudice from all corners of the world. Dealing with this problem will leave many Chinese citizens confused about where they can go and what they can do.
Immigration attorneys like Jean Danhong Chen may be able to help Chinese citizens navigate the difficult situation regarding travel to and from their home country. Understanding the outbreak of the novel coronavirus is necessary in order to deal with the associated travel restrictions.
Source: Salem-News.com Special Features Dept.
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