Travellers from overseas are no longer required to enter mandatory hotel quarantine upon arrival in Ireland.
The system was introduced in March of this year in an effort to halt the import of Covid-19, with selected countries or states added to a list requiring their arrivals to spend a quarantine period in a designated hotel.
Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly today announced that all states have been removed from this list requiring mandatory hotel quarantine, effective immediately.
The system has been scaled down progressively over recent months in line with the Government’s “revised approach to international travel, the success of Ireland’s vaccine roll-out and the evolution of the pandemic internationally,” a Department of Health statement said.
The decision to remove all countries from the list was based on the latest advice from the country’s chief medical officer, it added.
Of the 10,294 people who entered hotel quarantine in Ireland, the Department said 593 residents tested positive for Covid-19.
Mr Donnelly said the system was “introduced as an exceptional public health measure” at a time when there was a “very serious risk of importation of variants of concern that had the potential to overwhelm our health service and, in particular, to undermine Ireland’s Covid-19 vaccination programme.”
“At the peak of the system’s operation, some 60 states were designated and the greatest number of persons in mandatory hotel quarantine (MHQ) at one time reached 1,008 on 9th May,” he said.
“The successful operation of MHQ has played a central role in protecting the population, maintaining control of the disease and enabling the safe relaxation of restrictions on our economy and society.”
The Minister for Health thanked the more than 10,000 people who completed a period of quarantine in a designated hotel.
At present, travellers arriving into Ireland must still provide proof of a negative PCR test for Covid-19, of vaccination or of recovery.
They must also continue to follow requirements relating to home-based quarantine and complete a Passenger Locator Form.