Mexico increases measures to combat coronavirus

MEXICO (KGNS) - Mexico will suspend all large public and private gatherings for a month as it attempts to contain the spread of the coronavirus while extending support to small businesses, government officials said on Tuesday.

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Travel on the U.S. borders with Canada and Mexico has dropped significantly in the past week, as the Trump administration attempts to slow the spread of COVID-19.

As a result, the president has limited crossings at the ports of entry to essential travel only.

Tamaulipas health officials began taking temperatures and offering hand sanitizer to those entering the state from the U.S.

There are 15 different stations set-up all along the Mexican American border.

Speaking at a regular news briefing, Deputy Health Minister Hugo Lopez-Gatell said Mexico has seen an increase in non-imported coronavirus cases and the government will step up mitigation measures.

President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador also suggested that the titans of the Mexican industry are stepping up, noting that billionaire Carlos Slim told him that he will not lay off any workers during the coronavirus crisis.

The Mexican president has received criticism for his relatively relaxed response to the coronavirus so far.

During the news conference on Tuesday morning, his cabinet ministers stood on stage in a neat line, failing to respect the five-foot distance recommended by the health ministry.

Nevertheless, Lopez-Gatell stressed Mexico would intensify measures now that the virus has begun spreading through "Community transmission," rather than simply people returning to Mexico after traveling to countries hit hard by the disease.

To address the economic fallout from the coronavirus, the government will give one million low-interest loans to small businesses in the country, Lopez Obrador said.