United Kingdom to announce quarantines for worldwide travellers

Remigio Civitarese
Mag 22, 2020

The Home Office says that as the transmission rate in the United Kingdom falls and the number of travellers arriving increases, imported cases may pose a larger threat as they could become a higher proportion of the overall number of infections in the United Kingdom and increase the spread of the disease.

Lewis said full details of the plan, which aims to try to prevent a second peak of the coronavirus pandemic, would be outlined by the interior minister, Priti Patel, later.

Exemptions apply for people coming from Ireland, medics tackling Covid-19, road-haulage and freight workers, and seasonal agricultural workers.

All worldwide arrivals, including returning Britons, will be required to self-isolate for 14 days and provide details of where they will be staying to the authorities.

"We are not shutting down completely".

"As we are taking this action, we are taking it at a time that it will be the most effective".

She said: "The advice is not about booking holidays, right now".

Unlike many other countries across the world, Britain has carried out few tests and checks on visitors, with quarantine limited only to arrivals from China at the start of the outbreak.

The rules will be reviewed every three weeks, so are expected to be in place until at least June 29.

The quarantine plan has sparked confusion and criticism from airlines, airports and lockdown-weary Britons wondering whether they will get to take a vacation overseas this summer.

The British government's current guidance recommends worldwide travel only when absolutely necessary, and states that nobody should travel if they display any coronavirus symptoms.

What does the new system involve?

Chairing the Downing Street briefing, Patel said passengers will need to provide their contact and travel information so they can be traced if infections arise.

In extreme circumstances Border Force officers could refuse entry to any non-British citizen or non-British resident who has decided not to fill in the form or not take part in the self-isolation period.

They could also be contacted regularly over the 14-day period to ensure they are complying. Random checks will be made on them, and fines in England for those that break the quarantine will be set at £1,000 ($1,220).

The big question being asked about quarantine is: why now?

Britain is now piloting a contact tracing smartphone app to better identify cases and the spread of the virus nationally.

But the measure was not extended to travellers from every country.

She said: "These measures will be kept under review and I really do want to emphasis that".

He told Nick Ferrari: "Quarantining people coming into the country really matters when of if we get our incidence really low - so if our incidence is much lower than other countries then it makes some sense to do that".

Labour's shadow home secretary Nick Thomas-Symonds said the party supported the new measures "but is clear they are no substitute for a long-term, well thought through approach".

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