The Inter-Agency Task Force or IATF has approved the recommendation of the Health Department to impose stricter testing protocols for arriving travelers from countries with cases of UK COVID-19 variant.
In an announcement on Friday, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said that the mandatory 14-day quarantine in government facilities will be replaced with testing the passenger upon arrival and then another test during the fifth day.
This means that if the passenger’s second RT-PCR test shows negative results then they can be sent home.
It was not immediately clear how long quarantine would be for those whose second swab test comes out positive.
“From the strict observation of an absolute fourteen (14) day facility-based quarantine period for Filipino citizens coming from areas where travel restrictions are in place, the IATF amended this to prescribed testing and quarantine protocols,” Roque said.
He added: “For passengers coming from, or transiting through, countries where travel restrictions are in place due to new COVID-19 variants, these incoming passengers shall be tested upon arrival and shall be quarantined until the result of the subsequent test administered on the fifth day is released.”
The incubation for COVID-19 is a period of 14 days. This means that a person can develop symptoms for the virus.
The IATF has previously mandated all travelers from at least 30 countries with reported cases of the UK COVID-19 variant to be quarantined for 14 days at the New Clark City.
The country’s first UK COVID-19 variant is a male traveler from Dubai.