COVID-19: US embassy issues health alert as Chile surpasses 50,000 cases

SANTIAGO – The United States embassy in Santiago on Wednesday issued a health alert for its citizens after the government of Chile implemented measures to limit the spread of COVID-19.

The new measures include extension of quarantine for Iquique, Alto Hospicio, Mejillones, and Antofagasta, Gran Santiago as well as six nearby comunas until Friday, May 29; Sanitary customs for the comuna of Ancud; and quarantine for the comuna of Lonquimay (begins Friday, May 22 at 10:00 pm).

In a statement, the embassy said: “LATAM has resumed commercial flights between Santiago and the U.S. As commercial flight options and availability may change with little notice, the U.S. Embassy continues to encourage all citizens who are not prepared to remain in Chile for an indefinite period of time to take advantage of commercial flights to the U.S. while they are available.”

The Department of State is not currently organizing an evacuation of American citizens from Chile, it added.

It is important to note that evacuation flights are not free of charge.

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With a total of 53,617 infections with 544 fatalities and 22,504 recoveries, Chile has the third highest tally of coronavirus cases in Latin America, after Brazil and Peru. A recent surge in cases prompted the national capital to go under a strict and total lockdown this weekend.

Meanwhile, the routine consular services remain suspended at U.S. Embassy in Santiago.