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Gov’t updates rules on returning Pinoys from ‘red list’ countries



The government has revised its protocols on inbound travelers from countries deemed as “high risk” for Covid-19 or territories classified under the “red list.”

Under the guidelines approved by the Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF), fully vaccinated travelers from such countries should present negative swab test results taken 48 hours before their departure and should undergo quarantine upon arrival.

They should also take swab tests on the seventh day since their arrival.

The said travelers can be discharged once they get negative test results, provided they stay on home quarantine up to 14th day from date of arrival.

Unvaccinated and partially vaccinated travelers, or those whose inoculation cannot be validated, have to stay in quarantine and take RT-PCR tests on the seventh day.

They can only be discharged after completing a 10-day quarantine, regardless of their test results. They were also required to observe home quarantine until the 14th day.

At present, overseas Filipinos and select foreigners such as diplomats, their dependents, and those with special business or permanent resident visas are the only individuals from “red list” countries who may enter the country.

Foreign tourists are still prohibited from entering the Philippines.

The IATF said that Antigua and Barbuda, Curacao, Malta, Puerto Rico, Spain, Aruba, French Guiana, Mayotte, Saudi Arabia, U.S. Virgin Islands, Canada, Iceland, Mozambique, Somalia will remain under the “red list” from 16 to 31 January.


Yellow, green lists

Meanwhile, the government has another set of rules for inbound travelers from nations under the “yellow” and “green” lists.

Those under the “yellow” list are destinations deemed as “moderate risk” for coronavirus, while the “green” list is composed of countries, territories, and jurisdictions considered as “low risk” for Covid-19 infection.

Fully vaccinated passengers from the “yellow” list are required to stay in a quarantine facility and take swab tests on the fifth day. Once they receive their negative results, they can be discharged for completion of home quarantine up to the seventh day, according to the IATF.

Unvaccinated and partially vaccinated travelers from the said areas, or those whose inoculation cannot be validated, should stay in a facility quarantine and take RT-PCR tests on the seventh day. They can continue their quarantine at home up to the 14th day.

Travelers from the “green” list, on the other hand, are not required to undergo quarantine. However, they need to self-monitor for Covid-19 symptoms for seven days.

He said unvaccinated and partially vaccinated travelers from the said areas, or those whose inoculation cannot be validated should undergo a facility quarantine until they get the result of their RT-PCRs test taken on the fifth day. They are also required to self-monitor for symptoms until the 14th day.

Countries included in the “green list” were Bangladesh, British Virgin Islands, Djibouti, Gambia, Hong Kong, Japan, Montserrat, Oman, Saba, Sierra Leone, Timor-Leste, Benin, China, Equatorial Guinea, Ghana, India, Kosovo, Morocco, Pakistan, Saint Barthelemy, Sint Eustatius, Uganda, Bhutan, Cote d’Ivoire, Falkland Islands, Guinea, Indonesia, Kyrgyzstan, Niger, Paraguay, Senegal, and Taiwan.

The rest of the countries are classified under the “yellow list.”