State Dept. to issue ‘do not travel’ advisories to 80% of countries amid ongoing COVID-19 pandemic
The U.S. Department of State said this week it will be updating its travel advisories to better reflect travel guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The update will result in approximately 80% of countries worldwide being under a Level 4: Do Not Travel advisory, the department said.
The department said their advisories take into account logistical factors, such as in-country testing availability and current travel restrictions for U.S. citizens.
"This does not imply a reassessment of the current health situation in a given country, but rather reflects an adjustment in the State Department’s Travel Advisory system to rely more on CDC’s existing epidemiological assessments," the department said.
The department added that it "strongly recommends U.S. citizens reconsider all travel abroad" amid the ongoing pandemic because of the "unprecedented risks" involved.
For those wishing to travel to the U.S., federal health authorities require international travelers to have a negative test result or evidence of recovery from COVID-19 before stepping on the flight.
The department didn’t say specifically when it will begin updating its advisories or which countries will be included. The latest advisories are listed here.
RELATED: Global COVID-19 death toll passes 3 million people
The news comes as COVID-19 deaths worldwide are on the rise again, averaging at around 12,000 per day, and new cases are climbing too, eclipsing 700,000 a day.
Over the weekend, the global COVID-19 death toll surpassed 3 million people. The number of lives lost, as compiled by Johns Hopkins University, is greater than Chicago’s population of 2.7 million and equivalent to the populations of Philadelphia and Dallas combined.
Top officials at the World Health Organization also gave a warning this week over alarming rates of infections and poor outcomes.
"Infections and hospitalizations among people aged 25-to-59 are increasing at an alarming rate, possibly as a result of highly transmissible variants and increased social mixing among younger adults," said Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO director-general, during a briefing Monday.
RELATED: UK variant a 'brand new ballgame,' infecting children in US 'very readily,' epidemiologist warns
Earlier this month, the CDC did clear domestic travel for vaccinated individuals.
The new guidelines say vaccinated travelers are less likely to get and spread the virus, but the CDC still recommends safety measures like wearing a mask, social distancing and hand washing.
FOX News contributed to this report