15 countries reclassified as ‘high risk’ for COVID-19

15 countries reclassified as 'high risk' for COVID-19

15 countries including the United States, Spain and France are to be reclassified to “high risk” from “medium risk” by August 20, meaning international arrivals from those countries will face lengthened quarantine as a result of a resurgence of the coronavirus.

According to a statement on Monday by the government of Hong Kong, arrivals from Bangladesh, Cambodia, France, Greece, Iran, Malaysia, the Netherlands, Spain, Sri Lanka, Switzerland, Tanzania, Thailand, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates and the United States would all face the new restrictions.

There had been acute surges in the number of confirmed cases in a short period of time in many countries, the government said.

Globally, Hong Kong has some of the most stringent coronavirus entry requirements. Arrivals from countries considered “high risk” are mandated to undergo compulsory quarantine for 21 days in a designated quarantine hotel, including those who are vaccinated.

The statement said, “Despite large-scale vaccination programmes, many places are also experiencing resurgence of the virus, which poses enormous challenges to our local anti-epidemic efforts.”

Also from August 20, Australia will be reclassified as “medium risk” from “low risk”. Arrivals from this country including vaccinated individuals will need to quarantine for 14 nights unless they have a positive antibody test result conducted by a laboratory recognised by the Hong Kong Government, which then allows them to do a seven-day quarantine.

Hong Kong over the past two months, has seen a steady rise of imported COVID-19 cases though it has largely controlled the virus with hardly any locally transmitted COVID-19 cases.

Around 12,000 COVID-19 cases in total has so far been recorded by Hong Kong.

Author: Greg