Antarctica has confirmed the information about the first outbreak of COVID-19 - which means, now the coronavirus pandemic has officially covered all earthly continents.
Health and military officials have quarantined Bernardo O'Higgins base personnel this week: remote research station, located in the north of Antarctica, surrounded by ocean and icebergs. Reported, what not less 36 person at the base, controlled by the Chilean army, contracted the virus. Among them - 26 military personnel and 10 civil contractors, who carried out repair work.
The army declared, that staff are "already properly isolated and under constant surveillance" by the health authorities in Magallanes, in Chilean Patagonia, - reports Reuters.
Research and military stations based in Antarctica in recent months, which are some of the most remote on the planet, made great efforts, to contain the spread of the virus. This included giving up tourism, reduction in the volume of work and the number of employees, as well as the closure of premises.
British Antarctic Survey researchers have calculated, what about 1 thousand. man on 38 stations across the continent managed to safely spend the winter in the southern hemisphere, avoiding COVID-19 infection.
Nonetheless, increased travel to and from the region this spring and early summer has increased the risk of coronavirus infection. According to army officials, the first cases of COVID-19 were reported in mid-December, when two soldiers got sick.