No more facility-based quarantine for vaccinated foreigners, Filipinos from ‘green’ countries

No need for facility-based quarantine for fully-vaccinated foreigners and Filipinos upon arrival in the Philippines so long as they come from "green" countries.

This was announced by the Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) through Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque in a statement on Wednesday, October 13. This is also according to IATF Resolution Nos. 144-A and 144-B.

Starting Thursday, the following will be required of fully-vaccinated foreigners entering the Philippines from “green” countries and do not apply to tourists:

  • A negative result in a reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) test within 72 hours prior to departure from their country of origin.
  • Upon arrival in the Philippines, self-monitoring for any symptoms of COVID-19 for 14 days.

The green countries from October 16 to October 31 are: 

  • Algeria
  • American Samoa
  • Bhutan
  • Burkina Faso
  • Cameroon
  • Cayman Islands
  • Chad
  • China (Mainland)
  • Comoros
  • Republic of the Congo
  • Cook Islands
  • Eritrea
  • Falkland Islands (Malvinas)
  • Gibraltar
  • Hong Kong (Special Administrative Region of China)
  • Kiribati
  • Madagascar
  • Mali
  • Marshall Islands
  • Federated States of Micronesia
  • Montserrat
  • Nauru
  • New Zealand
  • Nicaragua
  • Niger
  • Niue
  • North Korea
  • Northern Mariana Islands
  • Palau
  • Poland
  • Saba (Special Municipality of the Kingdom of the Netherlands)
  • Saint Helena
  • Saint Pierre and Miquelon
  • Samoa
  • Sierra Leone
  • Sint Eustatius
  • Solomon Islands
  • Sudan
  • Syria
  • Taiwan
  • Tajikistan
  • Tanzania
  • Tokelau
  • Tonga
  • Turkmenistan
  • Tuvalu
  • Uzbekistan
  • Vanuatu
  • Yemen

Fully-vaccinated Filipinos can choose to take the same RT-PCR test as foreigners within 72 hours before departure and show a negative result, or choose to take the RT-PCR test at a quarantine facility upon their arrival in the Philippines and stay at the facility until they receive a negative result. 

Facility-based quarantine is still required for the following Filipinos until the release of a negative RT-PCR test taken on their 5th day of quarantine: 

  • Unvaccinated
  • Partially vaccinated
  • Individuals whose vaccination status cannot be independently verified
  • Those vaccinated but failed to comply with the test-before-travel requirements

Foreigners who fall into any of the above categories are required to secure hotel reservations for at least six days.

Unvaccinated or partially-vaccinated children traveling with their fully-vaccinated guardians must observe the quarantine protocols that correspond with their vaccination status. Their guardian will accompany them in the quarantine facility. 

COVID-19 vaccinations in the Philippines among minors aged 12 to 17 begin on October 15. Those who fall under that age range and who have underlying medical conditions can be vaccinated in pilot areas in Metro Manila. 

The vaccine status of overseas Filipino workers (OFW), non-OFWs, and foreigners vaccinated in the Philippines can be validated by presenting their VaxCertPH digital certificate, Bureau of Quarantine/World Health Organization-issued (WHO) International Certificate of Vaccination or Prophylaxis (ICV), or the national digital certificate issued by the government of the country where they were vaccinated.

Foreign nationals can validate their vaccine status through their WHO-issued ICV or the national digital certificate of the foreign government which has accepted the VaxCertPH under a reciprocal agreement. 

'Yellow' list countries

Facility-based quarantine is still required for individuals who are arriving from “yellow” or “red” list countries. Romania is classified as “red,” while all other countries, jurisdictions, and territories not mentioned are classified as “yellow.” 

Fully vaccinated individuals coming from yellow list countries need to undergo facility-based quarantine until the release of a negative RT-PCR test taken on the fifth day of their quarantine. They will then be required to undergo home quarantine until the 10th day. Foreign nationals are required to secure pre-booked accommodation for at least six days. 

Individuals coming from yellow list countries who are unvaccinated, partially vaccinated, or whose vaccination status cannot be independently verified by Philippine authorities as valid and authentic are required to undergo a facility-based quarantine until the release of a negative RT-PCR test taken on the seventh day of their quarantine. They will then undergo home quarantine until their 14th day. Foreign nationals are required to secure pre-booked accommodation for at least eight days. 

'Red' list countries

Only Filipinos returning to the country via government-initiated repatriation, non-government-initiated repatriation, and Bayanihan flights may be allowed entry, subject to testing and quarantine protocols.

All other inbound travelers coming from or who have been to red list countries within 14 days prior to their arrival in the Philippines are not allowed, regardless of vaccination status. 

Individuals who are transiting through a red list country will not be considered as having come from that country if they stayed at the airport the whole time and were not cleared for entry by its immigration authorities. These passengers will comply with the existing testing protocols upon their arrival in the Philippines. 

Filipinos returning to the Philippines from red list countries are required to undergo a 14-day quarantine upon arrival. The first 10 days of quarantine will be facility-based, while the remainder will be completed under home quarantine in their respective local government units of destination.

They will undergo an RT-PCR test on the seventh day of quarantine but must complete the entire 10-day duration of the facility-based quarantine even if they test negative. 

The Bureau of Quarantine shall ensure strict symptom monitoring while they are in the quarantine facility.

The government lifted inbound travel restrictions on the United Arab Emirates, India, and eight other countries on September 6, allowing thousands of stranded OFWs to return home amid expiring work contracts and overstaying woes.

As of October 14, the Philippines has 2,698,232 total confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 40,221 COVID-19-related deaths. As of October 10, there are 23,186,969 fully vaccinated Filipinos, or 21.04% of the population. The Philippines began vaccinating the rest of its adult population on October 7. – Rappler.com

Vernise Tantuco

Vernise Tantuco is on Rappler's Research Team, fact checking suspicious claims, wrangling data, and telling stories that need to be heard.

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