18 countries have no reported coronavirus cases

18 countries have no reported coronavirus cases

Even though the number of reported coronavirus cases around the world passed the one million mark on Thursday afternoon, there are still a small number of nations which have reported no confirmed cases of COVID-19.

According to data collected by John Hopkins University, 18 out of the 193 United Nations-member countries claim to be coronavirus-free.

They are Comoros, Kiribati, Lesotho, the Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Nauru, North Korea, Palau, Samoa, Sao Tome and Principe, the Solomon Islands, South Sudan, Tajikistan, Tonga, Turkmenistan, Tuvalu, Vanuatu and Yemen.

While some of them are likely to not report any cases — such as hermetically isolated North Korea, as well as war-torn Yemen and South Sudan — others could indeed have been spared of the pandemic which has killed more than 55,000 since the first case was registered on Nov. 17 in Hubei, China.

RELATED: Take a look at the coronavirus outbreak in the United States:

They are, for the most part, small remote islands that normally don’t receive many tourists, and where social isolation is just part of people’s everyday lives.

According to data released in September 2018 by the UN’s World Tourism Organization, seven of the world’s 10 least-visited places make up the list of the world’s last coronavirus-free states.

While natural social isolation might have spared some nations of the devastating spread of the fast growing pandemic, however, the fact that they are so isolated is a major concern for some governments.

In one nation drastic measures have been enacted — even before any confirmed infection case.

The president of Nauru, a small island county in Micronesia, northeast of Australia, fears that COVID-19 is already a matter of national emergency, as he told the BBC.

“We’re keeping things at the border,” President Lionel Aingimea said. “We’re using our airport as the border and our transit facilities as part of our border.”

With just over 10,000 people, the UN’s second-smallest country is at least 200 miles far from its closest neighbor, Banaba Island, part of Kiribati, a country in the Pacific Ocean which is also coronavirus-free.

The closest large city with a direct flight to Nauru is Brisbane, Australia, around 2,100 miles to the south.

With a country with only one hospital, no ventilators and a shortage of nurses, Aingimea is not taking any chances.

His “capture and containment” order banned travelers coming from China, South Korea, Italy and Iran since early March. Overall flights have been either reduced or suspended.

People arriving from Australia (mostly returning residents) receive a 14-day quarantine in a hotel, and are checked for symptoms every day.

When some developed fever, they were further isolated and tested for COVID-19. The kits, which were analyzed in Australia, came back negative.

“Every time we look at the [COVID-19] map it looks like the world has got a measles outbreak — there’s red dots all over the place,” Aingimea said.

Some other small Pacific countries — such as Kiribati, Tonga and Vanuatu — have also enacted similar measure, according to the BBC.

Latest coronavirus updates: Click here for our roundup of the most important developments from NYC and around the world.