By Teddy Cambosa

Philippine health authorities have now added four more countries to their list of destinations who have the ‘red alert’ classification of travel restrictions in line with the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

The countries are namely Grenada, Papua New Guinea, Serbia and Slovenia.

According to the latest statement from Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque, he said that the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-MEID) classifies these territories being ‘high-risk’, and therefore any travelers coming from these countries, regardless of their vaccination status, are barred from entering the country.

“This new classification shall take effect on September 19, 2021 until September 30, 2021,” Roque said.

However, an exception can be made from travelers from said countries if the travelers are repatriates. If so, they are required to undergo a 10-day facility-based quarantine and get an RT-PCR test on the seventh day. If they tested negative, they can complete four more days of isolation at home.

IATF-MEID has also updated guidelines on quarantine requirements for passengers coming from countries on ‘yellow’ and ‘green’ travel restriction classifications.

Countries and territories under the ‘green’ travel restriction classification include American Samoa, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Cayman Islands, Chad, China, Comoros, Republic of the Congo, Djibouti, Equatorial Guinea, Falkland Islands (Malvinas), Gabon, Hong Kong (Special Administrative Region of China), Hungary, Madagascar, Mali, Federated States of Micronesia, Montserrat, New Caledonia, New Zealand, and Niger.

Other countries and territories under the ‘green’ classification include Palau, Poland, Saba (Special Municipality of the Kingdom of Netherlands), Saint Pierre and Miquelon, Sierra Leone, Sint Eustatius, Taiwan, Algeria, Bhutan, Cook Islands, Eritrea, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Nauru, Nicaragua, Niue, North Korea, Saint Helena, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Sudan, Syria, Tajikistan, Tanzania, Tokelau, Tonga, Turkmenistan, Tuvalu, Vanuatu, and Yemen.

Fully vaccinated travelers from areas in the green list will be allowed a shorter, seven-day facility-based quarantine upon arrival in the country.

Teddy Cambosa is a graduating BS Biology student and a former campus journalist at Batangas State University