Update on Covid-19 January 2021

January 14, 2021 – update for control measures due to the pandemic

CURRENT SITUATION

According to the most recent data, the Madeira islands with about 267 thousand inhabitants, registered 1,027 active infections, on January the 7th of 2021.

Bring this to a total of 2,379 confirmed cases and 18 deaths as of March the 16th, 2020. 33% of these cases were imported cases (781) and were identified from the testing at the region’s airports.

More than 40% of confirmed cases (998 cases) were diagnosed in the last 14 days, during the Holiday Season, Christmas.

The main reason for this significant growth is due to family gatherings and traditional celebration.

The chains of transmission are fully identified, and additional measures have been taken to track and contain the pandemic.

INCIDENCE

Madeira has an estimate population of 267 thousand inhabitants, some municipalities, namely the smaller ones, Porto Santo, and Porto Moniz have around 5000 and 2350 inhabitants, respectively.

The ratios of new cases in the last 14 days for every 100,000 inhabitants are high.

A sample of 12 cases in Porto Santo and 6 cases in Porto Moniz are sufficient to make these areas high risk.

Low population density led to the fact that several municipalities in Madeira currently have a high risk of contagion, according to international metrics.

However, there is no active community transmission in Madeira or Porto Santo and all chains of transmission chains are identified.

Vaccination has been ongoing since the end of December 2020 and by January 7, more than 1,200 health professionals have already been vaccinated.

The goal is to have between 60% to 80% of the resident population vaccinated during this year, 2021.

MEASURES ADOPTED, UPDATE FROM 13TH OF JANUARY

To keep ensuring control over the epidemiological situation in Madeira, the Regional Government has implemented a set of new short-term measures, which are in force during the until January the 31st:

Restaurants and shops – closing during the week at 6 pm, with meals allowed until 10 pm, solely for home delivery.

On Saturdays and Sundays, closing hour is at 17:00, including takeaway and home delivery.

Except for hotels that can guarantee dinner service for their guests.

All industrial, commercial, and service activities, as well as casinos, are closed until 6 pm on weekdays and until 5 pm on weekends.

Exception to pharmacies, clinics, and offices, as well as fuel

Schools – secondary school and high school classroom lessons have been suspended, as well as all extra-curricular activities.

Teleworking – the regional public administration has reduced it presential work to a minimum, opting whenever possible for Teleworking.

• Visits to care homes are suspended until January 15th , while testing and vaccinating their professionals and users.

Restrictions on circulation – it is forbidden in the Autonomous Region of Madeira to circulate on public roads, between 7:00 pm and 5:00 am, on weekdays and between 6:00 pm and 5:00 am, on weekends.

Limitation of gatherings – any family events or gathering of this nature are limited to five people unless they are from the same household.

Sports activities – suspension of all sports activities, except senior teams that participate and compete in national competitions on a regular basis.

Reinforcement of inspection – the authorities reinforced inspection to ensure compliance throughout the Region.

The expectations are that, with the measures in place, Madeira will recover to one of the lowest incidences of the pandemic in Europe and drop to pre-Christmas case numbers.

OPENING TO TOURISM

Madeira remains open to visitors and the epidemiological situation keeps under control.

All those who visit us are subject to the security rules and measures in force, however, the destination still offers a true and safe experience.

The main measures were implemented on July 1st 2020, when Madeira reopened its doors to tourism and implemented a mandatory and free test upon arrival or done at the origin 72 hours prior to departure, hygiene measures and the use of a mask whenever social distancing is not guaranteed, which excludes places such as nature or on the beaches, where it is still possible to enjoy the experience without wearing a mask.

All of these rules can be found at TOURISM REOPENING

When accessing by sea, docking and the use of marinas, ports and anchorages in Madeira and Porto Santo are also authorized, but the disembarking of passengers from cruise ships is subject to the authorization from the Regional Health Authority.

For other vessels, disembarking is possible, but is subject to safety measures, such as testing and temperature measurement.

Until January 7, about 146 thousand PCR tests have been carried out at airports and ports in Madeira and Porto Santo and local laboratories have already processed more than 240 thousand PCR tests.

Passengers holding a certified medical document attesting that they have recovered from COVID-19, issued within the last 90 days of arrival in the region, or document certifying that they have been vaccinated for COVID-19, according to the recommended plan and respecting the period of activation of the immune system according to the characteristics of the product, they can freely enter the islands.

MADEIRA SAFE TO DISCOVER

Madeira remains committed to positioning itself as a safe destination and, together with SGS, a world leader in inspection, verification, and testing, is certifying companies from the tourism sector based in the archipelago of Madeira, to ensure the best international practices in the management of biological risks throughout the Archipelago, in order to minimize the risk of transmission from Covid-19.

By the end of 2020, we had almost 700 proposals prepared for certification projects, 62 units registered, 54 units audited, 17 companies already certified and now in 2021, new companies to obtain this heavily criterion certification, every week.

This certification is available to all companies in the tourism sector, being easily identified by the “MADEIRA SAFE TO DISCOVER” logo.

The vast majority of local companies also adopted the “CLEAN & SAFE” seal, created by VisitPortugal which communicates the commitment to health security in establishments and in tourism activities and experiences.

Thanks to these strict measures, which started to be implemented about 6 months ago, when Madeira reopened to tourism, there are no reports of cases of Covid-19 transmission in hotels.

Despite the increase in cases of local transmission in Madeira in the last two weeks, Madeira remains unequivocally as a safe destination for all its visitors.

The region’s commitment to the safety of its residents and visitors is, and will continue to be, a top priority.