Entry regulations to be relaxed, government says

The government announced on Friday that they will relax entry regulations for the country’s Test and Go procedure, adopting faster testing.

The Test and Go procedure is only available for vaccinated travelers from 63 designated “low-risk” countries who have passed an RT-PCR test within 72 hours prior to arrival. 

According to current regulation, travelers going through the Test and Go procedure must be tested with yet another RT-PCR test upon arrival, then they must wait at a SHA+ accommodation, or a quarantine facility for their test results to be negative before they can leave the venue.

But starting December 16, the RT-PCR test upon arrival will be replaced with a rapid antigen test (ATK) which can provide a faster result.

“Since they have to be tested with RT-PCR test within 72 hours prior to arrival, the ministry of public health already approved the changes that another ATK test would be enough,” said Dr Taweesin Visanuyothin, the spokesperson of the CCSA.

“Basically, the new measure is ATK and Go,” Taweesin said.

Taweesin added the reason for the new process is because only 0.13 per cent of people who entered the country since the official reopening of the country have tested positive for the virus so far.

A total of 104,065 air passengers arrived between November 1 and November 25. Out of that number, only 135 tested positive for Covid, according to CCSA’s data. 

The government hopes that simplifying the testing will result in less time spent on processing arrivals, as more people are expected to fly into the country following the country’s reopening. 

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