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India issues Revised Guidelines for International Travelers in view of reported cases of new SARS-CoV-2 variant (Omicron) across the world.

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Guidelines require all travelers (irrespective of COVID-19 vaccination status) coming to India from countries identified as ‘countries at-risk’ to Mandatorily undergo post-arrival COVID-19 testing at Airport on Arrival.

The global trajectory of COVID-19 pandemic continues to decline with certain regional variations.

The need to monitor the continuously changing nature of virus and evolution of SARS-CoV-2 variants of concern (VOCs) must still remain in focus.

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The existing guidelines for international arrivals in India have been formulated taking a risk-based approach.

The existing guidelines have been revised in view of reporting of a new variant of SARS-CoV-2 (B.1.1.529; named Omicron) which has been now classified as Variant of Concern by the World Health Organization.

Scope –

This guideline provides protocols to be complied with international travellers as well those to be followed by airlines, points of entry (airports, seaports and land border) for risk profiling of passengers.

This Standard Operating Procedure shall be valid w.e.f. 1st December 2021 (00.01 Hrs IST) till further orders. Based on the risk assessment, this guidelines shall be reviewed from time to time.

While Union Ministry of Health continues to closely follow the evolving nature of pandemic, strict adherence to COVID Appropriate Behavior (use of mask/face cover, physical distancing, wash your hands and respiratory hygiene) and undertaking Covid-19 vaccination remain the mainstay for managing COVID-19 at the community level.

The new guideline shall come into effect on 1st December 2021 (00.01 Hrs.).

The detailed guidelines are available at:

https://www.mohfw.gov.in/pdf/GuidelinesforInternationalarrival28112021.pdf

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    Ankita Deshkar

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