1. Preventing transmission
The section on PREVENTING TRANSMISSION includes information on key public health measures that aim to prevent the further spread of the disease. It details how countries are advising the general public and people who (might) have the disease to prevent further spread, as well as measures in place to test and identify cases, trace contacts, and monitor the scale of the outbreak.
1.1 Health communication
Expert advice on hand hygiene, respiratory etiquette and social distancing was issued long before the first patient with COVID-19 was identified in Belarus (on 27 February 2020) through multiple press briefings and Ministerial speeches in January-February 2020 (http://minzdrav.gov.by/ru/sobytiya/prafilaktyka-pa-nedapushchenni-raspa-syudzhvannya-karonavirusa/). Information materials have been published on the Ministry of Health website which has a specific page for COVID-19 and included instructions on when, where and how to wash hands, wear masks and keep physical distance (http://minzdrav.gov.by/ru/dlya-belorusskikh-grazhdan/COVID-19/). No travel restrictions were put in place, but in January 2020, people were advised against all but essential international travel to the People’s Republic of China and countries suspected of having a large COVID-19 outbreak. As the situation with COVID-19 in Belarus evolved, expert advice was regularly updated and communicated through official channels, by expanding the scope and content of prophylactic measures, and targeting specific population groups (elderly, people with chronic conditions, detained people, etc). The list of countries with high risk of COVID-19 and therefore not recommended for visiting is updated on a regular basis (http://minzdrav.gov.by/upload/dadvfiles/letter/ПЕРЕЧЕНЬ%20СТРАН.pdf).