As of Friday morning, the Bolivarian nation had reported 144,277 COVID-19 cases and 1,415 related deaths. These figures are the result of public policies applied on time.
Early warning and quarantine status
On March 13, 2020, when only two COVID-19 cases had been reported, Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro decreed a state of alarm, announced the suspension of classes, and banned mass gatherings and mobility between subnational territories.
Three days later, he put in place a "social and voluntary quarantine" which was faithfully observed during the first two months, when only food, health, and press workers were allowed to carry out their activities.
Suspension of flights
The Bolivarian leader also ordered the immediate suspension of flights from Europe, Colombia, Panama, and the Dominican Republic. Shortly thereafter, flights from the rest of the world were also suspended.
Although this measure exempted humanitarian trips managed by diplomatic entities, the decision remained in force until November, when the airspace was opened for airplanes from Iran, Turkey, Mexico, Dominican Republic, and Panama.
Restriction on land borders
Land borders were immediately closed and only humanitarian corridors were enabled to allow the entry of Venezuelans who were stranded in other countries or decided to return to their homeland.
At that time, the authorities allowed entry by land of a maximum of 400 people per day and only three days per week.
First interview with UN Special Rapporteur on Venezuela:
⛔ US sanctions are illegal
⛔ US sanctions undermine the human rights of Venezuelans
— End the blockade ����#WalkingForCuba (@cubasupport)
March 6, 2021
A decrease in vehicular traffic
The quarantine coincided with a decrease in the mobility of people caused by the gasoline shortage induced by the U.S. blockade. President Donald Trump's arbitrary sanctions prevented the South American nation from purchasing resources to refine gasoline.
This led to a period of harsh fuel rationing that lasted until the end of May when Venezuela was able to obtain gasoline from Iran.
A unique and audacious epidemiological model
In this context, the Bolivarian government implemented a quarantine modality called "7 + 7", which consists of seven consecutive days with strict mobility restrictions followed by a week in which quarantine measures are relaxed.
Through this epidemiological policy, the country was able to maintain economic activity without triggering a surge in the number of infections.
The strict control of mobility
During the first three months of the pandemic, the security forces exercised strict control to prevent people from moving between states and municipalities.
The Police and the Bolivarian National Guard (GNB) were deployed in each zone and established such strict control that even health workers, journalists, and security personnel had difficulties moving to their workplaces even though they had safe-conducts.
#FromTheSouth News Bits | Venezuela begins vaccinating teachers as President Nicolas Maduro called for a return to in-person classes in April, with plans to inoculate around 100,000 teachers with the vaccine produce by the Chinese lab, Sinopharm. pic.twitter.com/KbXX67ALK2