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US plans tougher testing, quarantine requirements for travelers

Travelers enter a security checkpoint at Logan International Airport, in Boston, November 24, 2021. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)
Travelers enter a security checkpoint at Logan International Airport, in Boston, November 24, 2021. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)

The United States will soon require international travelers entering the country to take a COVID test one day prior to departure, regardless of vaccination status, an official says.

A spokesperson for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says the measure will be announced once the rule is finalized. President Joe Biden is set to talk about America’s winter plans for COVID tomorrow and might announce the new requirements then.

Currently, vaccinated travelers to the US require a test three days prior to departure. Unvaccinated Americans or permanent residents need a test within one day, while unvaccinated non-citizens may not enter by air, with few exceptions.

The agency is also evaluating “considerations around additional post-arrival testing and self-quarantines,” CDC Director Rochelle Walensky said yesterday.

Citing three federal officials, the Washington Post reports that the government is weighing a proposal to require all travelers get retested within three to five days of arrival, which is currently only a recommendation.

More controversially, they are also debating a proposal to oblige travelers, including US citizens, to self-quarantine for seven days even if their test results are negative.

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