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Due to the new variant of COVID-19 from the UK, travelers are required to repeat a COVID-19 swab test after 5 days in quarantine.
Passengers arriving in the Philippines from countries with travel restrictions due to the new UK variant of COVID-19 are now mandated to undergo a second RT-PCR test on their fifth day of quarantine.
This is in light of the proposal of the Department of Health (DOH) to the Inter-Agency Task Force on the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF), following the incident of the contacts of the 29-year-old individual who tested positive for the UK variant of COVID-19 initially tested negative for the virus, but tested positive after having a repeat swab test
Presidential and IATF spokesperson Harry Roque said in a statement on Friday that the inbound passengers shall remain quarantined until the result of the second swab test is released.
Earlier, the government has enforced a travel ban on travelers from more than 20 countries to curb the possible spread of the new COVID-19 variant which is reportedly 70% more infectious than the previous.
The new protocol exempts Filipinos, who are allowed to enter the country, subject to the quarantine and viral testing protocols.
However, foreign nationals who serve as staff of accredited international organizations along with spouses and minor children of Filipino citizens with them, are now also exempted from the travel ban, Roque said. They would still have to undergo strict quarantine and testing protocols, as well.