Quarantine for vaccinated returnees likely to be relaxed

The Health Ministry said that the proposal to allow those vaccinated overseas to travel freely in Sri Lanka after a PCR test is being considered.

Director General of Health Services (DGHS) Dr. Asela Gunawardena said that the entire quarantine process is being reviewed.

Dr. Gunawardena said the number of days allocated for quarantine would be amended soon, considering possibilities for home quarantine.

Meanwhile, National Operations Centre for Prevention of COVID-19 Outbreak (NOCPCO) Head Army Commander General Shavendra Silva said those who have received both vaccines and have spent two weeks in their place of origin will be allowed to directly arrive in Sri Lanka and go home after undergoing PCR tests.

The NOCPCO Head further said approval has been granted to review the current quarantine strategy for Sri Lankan expatriates.

“There will be a change in this quarantine strategy in the coming days and it will be implemented soon,” he added.

General Silva said the Army will also provide security to the newly established quarantine centres run by the Sri Lanka Bureau of Foreign Employment (SLBFE). Nearly 3,600 expatriates are set to be quarantined in those centres.

The new developments come after the NOCPCO had made three key suggestions with regard to the quarantine process in a recent meeting with health authorities.

Army Commander General Silva earlier told Colombo Gazette that the Health Ministry’s technical committee on COVID-related matters is to take a final decision on the matter.

Meanwhile, stating that there was a significant drop in the detection of new COVID-19 cases, General Silva said a few clusters have been reported from the Kandy, Morawaka, and Katunayake areas.

Commenting on the upcoming festive season, the Army Commander urged people getting ready for New Year celebrations to be more careful.

He requested the public to avoid group contact and to strictly adhere to health guidelines. (Colombo Gazette)