Passengers Coming In From UK Must Test COVID-19 Negative, Says US
This comes in light of a more infectious strain of the virus that has been found in Britain.
The US government has made it mandatory for all airline passengers coming in from the UK to test COVID-19 negative, 72 hours prior to departure.
The new notification is effective from Monday, 28 December, in light of the new strain of the virus that is said to be more transmissible.
The notification issued by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) comes as a u-turn after the outgoing Donald Trump administration said that it was not planning on making testing mandatory for passengers coming in from the UK.
The new, highly infectious strain of the virus that has been found in the UK has prompted many countries across the world to introduce stringent rules for passengers coming in from there, or stop passengers from coming in.
"Viruses constantly change through mutation, and preliminary analysis in the UK suggests that this new variant may be up to 70 percent more transmissible than previously circulating variants," said the CDC.
The CDC also noted that in March President Trump suspended entry of nearly all foreign nationals who visited the United Kingdom in the past 14 days, which has reduced air travel to the US from Britain by about 90 percent.
Under the new policy, passengers departing from the UK for the United States must provide written documentation of their laboratory test result (in hard copy or electronic) to the airline, the CDC said.
Airlines must confirm negative test results for all passengers before they board. If passengers choose not to take a test, the airline must deny boarding.
(With inputs from Reuters)
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