By Landing Ceesay
The Ministry of Health has announced that travellers from the United Kingdom (UK), Germany and other hotspot countries for the Omicron variant will be tested upon arrival in the Gambia.
“Fully vaccinated passengers: Passengers who have been fully vaccinated need to show proof of full vaccination status and do not require PCR test to enter The Gambia, such travelers will be tested upon arrival using RDT and this test will be free of charge and the results could be given on the spot or sent online. However, the travelers are advised on self-monitored isolation and avail themselves to the testing centers for PCR test should in case they notice any signs and symptoms of COVID-19 or could call 1025 for enquiry. The list of Omicron variant Hotspot countries based on our national guidelines are as follows: Australia, Angola, Botswana , Canada, Denmark , ESwatini , Germany, Hong Kong, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Portugal, United Kingdom, South Africa , Zambia , Zimbabwe,” the Health Ministry said in a statement on Friday.
The Ministry said non-vaccinated or partially vaccinated passengers from hotspot countries would need proof of a negative PCR test report valid within 72hrs for entry into the country.
“In addition, all travelers in this category will be tested with RDT and those positive will be taken to the quarantine center at their own cost or isolated at their booked hotel for PCR Test to be conducted by the mobile laboratory team. Such travelers will remain under isolation until the result comes out. The list of such countries will be periodically updated,” the statement added.
In addition, concerning the Delta variant, it said children from hotspot countries for the Delta variant would undergo a Rapid Diagnostic Test at the Airport upon arrival.
“Children: Children under 18 years and from hotspot countries for both Delta and Omicron Variants are allowed to travel to The Gambia and upon arrival will be tested at the airport using RDT,” the Health Ministry said.
The Gambia registered its maiden case in March 2020 and the virus has killed close to 400 people so far. Thus, the need for everyone to get vaccinated and follow the advice of the Ministry of Health to be safe from the deadly pandemic.
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