May 26, 2022

Volume XII, Number 146

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Mexico’s COVID-19 Traffic Light Monitoring System: News for January 10–23, 2022

The COVID-19 Omicron variant is causing an increase in the rate of infection throughout Mexico (as elsewhere globally), resulting in the federal government’s decision to direct three of Mexico’s thirty-two states to take strong measures to control the spread of the pandemic, such as limiting business affairs to only essential activities and significantly reducing on-site worker capacity.

The worsening pandemic has also prompted the Mexican Social Security Institute (IMSS) to relaunch a program that provides individuals who have contracted COVID-19 with a “COVID-19 Permit,” which beneficiaries can use to take leave from work and receive a sick-leave subsidy from the IMSS. Individuals who have contracted the virus and who are symptomatic are entitled to take seven days of subsidized leave. Individuals who have received a positive test result but are not displaying symptoms are entitled to five subsidized days of leave. Individuals whose leave is approved by the IMSS must notify their employers to justify their absences from work.

Baja California SurChihuahua, and Tamaulipas are the three states currently operating under orange status restrictions, according to the federal government’s traffic light pandemic monitoring system. States in orange status limit the number of workers allowed on-site, among other restrictions. Another ten states, up from only three in the previous edition of this report, are in yellow status, at which point all work activities are allowed, but with measures taken to reduce the risk of infection among people at high risk of developing severe COVID-19–related symptoms.

The biweekly four-tiered monitoring system was implemented in June 2020 and is used to alert residents to the epidemiological risks of COVID-19 and provide guidance on restrictions on certain activities in each of the country’s states. Below is a map for the period of January 10–23, 2022, indicating the COVID-19 risk level in each of the states and the capital.

This chart presents the traffic light status of each state, and, as applicable, variations between federal and local traffic light statuses based on publications of the federal Ministry of Health and status reports provided by each state. Some states may impose lesser or greater restrictions than those imposed by the federal government. For example, Baja California, which the federal government designated in yellow status, has imposed orange-status restrictions. And Tamaulipas has decided to impose red-status restrictions in many of its municipalities, meaning that only essential activities are allowed.

Vaccinations and Pandemic Key Indicators

Ninety-one percent of the nearly 82.7 million people who have been vaccinated to date have been fully vaccinated, the federal Ministry of Health stated in its January 12, 2022, Daily Technical Report. The daily report also pointed out that a little more than 201.3 million vaccine doses had been made available so far.

According to the Ministry of Health’s pandemic tracking data, since the beginning of the pandemic, there have been more than 4.2 million confirmed COVID-19 cases. The data also shows that as of January 13, 2022, 300,912 people had died of COVID-19–related complications. (The number of COVID-19–related deaths could be higher, according to federal data on “excess mortality.”)

Mexico City

Mexico City’s pandemic tracking data reveals that as of January 12, 2022, more than 52,000 COVID-19 cases had been confirmed since New Year’s Day. However, the Mexico City Monitoring Committee has not updated its October 2021 decree designating the capital in green status. Therefore, since early November 2021, business and social affairs in Mexico City have generally been approved to take place without restriction.

The committee also has not updated the guidelines for private corporate offices, so employers may want to continue to limit the percentage of employees working on-site to 80 percent, in accordance with Mexico City’s industry-specific health protection guidelines. Employers in corporate office settings may also want to follow guidance stipulating that employers provide at their own expense and on a weekly basis rapid antigen tests or reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) tests for the detection of the SARS-CoV-2 virus, to at least 20 percent of the personnel attending work on-site.

Finally, the verification visits by the Administrative Verification Institute along with other Mexico City government authorities will continue to verify compliance with general and specific sanitary measures for health protection in workplaces. Employers found to be out of compliance with the measures may be fined or be subject to total or partial temporary suspensions of work centers for up to 15 calendar days. Noncompliant employers may also be subject to other applicable sanctions.

© 2022, Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart, P.C., All Rights Reserved.National Law Review, Volume XII, Number 20
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About this Author

Pietro Straulino-Rodriguez , Labor, Employment, Attorney, Ogletree Deakins Law Firm
Managing Partner

Pietro Straulino-Rodríguez is the managing partner of the Mexico City office of Ogletree Deakins. Before starting at Ogletree Deakins, Pietro worked for a number of years as a partner in private practice at a leading law firm in Mexico City in the firm’s Labor, Social Security and Immigration practice group. Previously he worked for a major labor boutique in Mexico City, in which he participated as an advisor and litigator in several matters. In addition, Pietro worked in the legal and government relations department of Ford Motor Company in Mexico. He has successfully combined his...

(+52)55-9171-1496
O. Iván Andrade Castelán Attorney Notary Services Ogletree Deakins Mexico City
Associate

O. Iván Andrade Castelan joined Ogletree Deakins in February 2018, in which he developed professionally as a law clerk for 3 years. Prior to joining Ogletree Deakins, he worked during 1 year at the 171st Public Notary in Mexico City. Ivan started his legal career in 2017 as Law Clerk in the 171st Public Notary in Mexico City, during such time he focused his practice in offering notarial services for all types of legal acts. Ivan is fluent in Spanish and English.

52-55-9156-4203
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