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Expat Coronavirus Report

Coronavirus in Innsbruck, Austria

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Mar 23, 2020 Update

We Asked: What is currently happening with regard to the Coronavirus outbreak in your area? Please provide as much detail as possible. He replied...

Here are conscise and up to date links issued in English:

Ministry of Health's Information on the Coronavirus COVID19,

Letter in English from Land Tirol,

and Coronavirus FAQ Tirol.

All valuable, relevant and essential information are contained in the links.

How People are Coping

We Asked: How are people handling the situation in your area? He replied...

Very well, I have not witnessed panic buying or empty supermarket shelves. There is plentiful fresh produce. People are respecting all guidelines. Although there are reports of fines being issued in other Austrian counties. We are allowed to go out to exercise (not to other villages or towns), exercise dogs and shop for essential items. But you can only go out with those who are in isolation with you. I have seem families, joggers and cyclists, and I have an allotment where I am allowed to go but not gather with other people. My fellow gardeners keep the recommended distance as we do our work.

Changing Conditions as coronavirus Spreads

We Asked: How has the situation changed as the Coronavirus has spread? He replied...

Tighter controls. Tirol did have the highest incidence of infection in Austria, but now Upper Austria has the highest. The borders were closed and isolation orders issued last Monday, 16th March. The airport in Innsbruck closed last Friday evening.

Government Response

We Asked: Describe how the government of the country about which you are reporting is handling this situation. He replied...

Overall, it is considered that the Government has for some time responded quickly and stringently, although there has been criticism that ski resorts were open for too long. One resort bar in Ischgl is being investigated for not reporting the infection of one of its staff. Many subsequent infections around Europe have been traced back to this bar being the probable source of the spread of infection. We are given up to date information and reports daily through the media.

Government Response with Regard to Expats

We Asked: Describe how your home country's government has handled the outbreak situation with regards to its expatriate citizens. He replied...

We are being dealt with as co-citizens of Tirol and Austria. We can find information and advice in English. Friends are keeping in contact and networking through social media.

Supplies and Shortages

We Asked: Is there a shortage of supplies in your location? He replied...

I have not witnessed panic buying, although supplies of loo roll seem to be low. That is all in Innsbruck.

Preparing for the Future

We Asked: What are you doing in terms of preparations in case the situation deteriorates in your location? He replied...

I have medical issues, but enough medication untill the end of April. There are call centres where I will get advice. There is no panic here, At the moment I feel confident and secure.

Lockdown & Passing the Time

We Asked: Are you staying home? If so, how are you passing the time? He replied...

I am at home unless shopping, but do need regular exercise due to medical issues. I am allowed to take exercise and visit my allotment. I watch films, read, rest and use social media to keep in touch with UK family, friends or Austrian contacts.

Public Healthcare & Public Hospitals

We Asked: Are you enrolled in the public healthcare system where you live? Do you feel that the public hospitals are handling or preparing for the Coronavirus outbreak effectively? He replied...

I am enrolled in the public health care system, and have been for fourteen years. I receive pension from Austria.

Private Health Insurance & Private Hospitals

We Asked: Do you have private health insurance? If you have private insurance, does this give you access to private hospitals? Are private hospitals or clinics better prepared, less prepared, or the same? Please explain. He replied...

I do not have private insurance.

Hospital of Choice for Coronavirus Treatment

We Asked: Would you choose a public or private hospital if you needed treatment for Coronavirus? Why? If there is a specific hospital that you would go to in the event of severe illness? Which hospital and why? He replied...

Public. I have mostly been treated promptly and professionally by various departments of Tirol's Public Health system. I have had and do have a number of health issues.

Returning Home

We Asked: Are you considering returning to your home country due to the Coronavirus? Would this be a temporary move or a permanent repatriation? Please explain. He replied...

I can not return due to the current restrictions. I do worry about my family in the UK, some of whom are vulnerable due to age and health issues. I would prefer to stay in Tirol.

Advice for People Outside of Innsbruck, Austria

We Asked: If you live in an area already heavily affected by coronavirus, what advice would you share with others elswhere in the world who may be facing the same challenges in the future. He replied...

Stay at home as much as possible. Do not panic-buy - my sister in England is disabled and having serious problems buying basic produce. Only go out if absolutely necessary. Do not gather in public or private places. Take care and be aware of neighbours who may be vulnerable. Respect and adhere to Official advice and legislation. Respect the needs of those people doing essential work for you and everyone.

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