Covid-19: US makes negative report mandatory for incoming fliers

In the absence of a negative Covid-19 report, passengers will have to produce documentation of having recovered in the 90 days before boarding their flight.

The new protocol will become effective from December 6, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said. (File)
The new protocol will become effective from December 6, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said. (File)

The US has made a negative Covid-19 report or proof of recovery mandatory for all incoming passengers, including those from India, amid rising number of cases of the Omicron variant.

The new protocol will become effective from December 6, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said.

Indian officials told Indian-American community leaders that the amendment updated Covid-19 testing requirements for passengers over two years old boarding a flight to the US, the Press Trust of India reported.

Passengers for flights departing for the US from after 12:01 AM EST (10:31 AM IST) on December 6 are required to show a negative Covid-19 result no older than one day, according to the amended requirements.

In the absence of a negative Covid-19 report, passengers will have to produce documentation of having recovered in the 90 days before boarding their flight.

Air passengers will also have to attest that the information they present is true, officials told the Press Trust of India.

The one-day period is a day before departure — the order uses the one-day time frame instead of 24 hours to provide flexibility to passengers and airlines.

According to the circular, using a one-day window ensured that test acceptability did not depend on the time of flight or the time of day that the sample was taken.

On Saturday, New York detected three cases of the Omicron variant, bringing the state’s total to eight. Seven of the cases are in New York City.

New York Health Commissioner Mary Bassett said the Omicron variant was here and, as anticipated, they were seeing the start of community spread. On Saturday, Washington and Massachusetts announced their first cases, a day after Georgia, New Jersey, Maryland, and Pennsylvania.

The World Health Organization declared the Omicron to be a ‘variant of concern’ based on the preliminary evidence that it spreads rapidly.

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