CORONAVIRUS/Taiwan to shorten quarantine for arriving travelers from 10 to 7 days
Taipei, May 3 (CNA) The quarantine requirement for arriving travelers will be reduced from 10 days to seven, starting May 9, the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) said Tuesday, as Taiwan opts to live with COVID-19.
Health Minister Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the CECC, said the new measure is being introduced based on the shorter incubation period of the Omicron variant, and the need for Taiwan to maintain normal economic activity and preserve its critical medical capacity.
As a result, arriving travelers will start their seven-day quarantine the day after obtaining a negative polymerase chain reaction (PCR) result upon arrival, Chen said during a CECC briefing.
The government will provide travelers with two rapid tests, one of which is to be taken on the last day of quarantine and the other only if they develop symptoms during the quarantine period, he said.
Travelers must quarantine under a one-person-one-residence rule, otherwise they should stay in a quarantine hotel, according to Chen.
Family members or groups traveling together can stay in the same residence or hotel room, Chen said, however, it is recommended no more than two people stay in the same room at a hotel as any more would be too crowded.
Travelers should observe seven-days of self-health management from day 8, during which time they can go out but are prohibited from eating in restaurants or attending large-scale events, according to the CECC.
In addition, the CECC noted, travelers under the age of two will take a PCR test on the last day of the seven-day quarantine period, while local health authorities will also help people conduct rapid tests if they are not capable of doing so on their own.
On March 7, Taiwan shortened its quarantine requirement for arriving travelers from 14 days to 10, while it announced on April 25 that the 10-day quarantine rule would remain in place for the group, despite the introduction of a "3+4" plan to shorten the quarantine time for contacts of people who test positive for COVID-19.
The "3+4" plan requires only three days of actual quarantine. On the fourth day contacts can go out under "self-initiated epidemic prevention" measures providing they obtain a negative rapid test result, according to the CECC.
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