Taiwan rejects general coronavirus testing for arrivals from 12 countries

Testing of arrivals from Philippines to be evaluated after one month: CECC

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Arrivals at Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport 

Arrivals at Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport  (CNA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Contrary to media reports, there are no plans to introduce general Wuhan coronavirus (COVID-19) testing for passengers arriving from 12 high-risk countries, the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) said Thursday (Aug. 20).

At present, arrivals from the Philippines are subject to the tests, as most of the recent imported cases in Taiwan have been Taiwanese nationals returning from work in the neighboring country.

Media reports suggested that 12 other countries or areas deemed to be high risk for coronavirus infections could join the list in September, with all arrivals being subject to compulsory PCR testing.

However, CECC spokesman Chuang Jen-hsiang (莊人祥) on Thursday denied the reports, adding that the policy on the Philippines would be reviewed after a month and either continued or halted according to the results, CNA reported.

Of those arrivals from the Philippines who have tested positive, only two had been asymptomatic at the time, with one having been in close contact with a patient and another having developed symptoms after the testing.

The CECC is constantly monitoring the situation in other countries and adapting its policies to changing circumstances, he said. Several locations deemed as low-risk recently reported a resurgence of infections, including Australia, Japan, South Korea, Hong Kong, and Vietnam.