The world economy has been severely shaken by the effects of the pandemic. Restarting the economy is one of the priorities for governments all over the world. Considering this IATA proposes alternatives to quarantine.
The International Air Transport Association (IATA) advised governments against imposing quarantine regulations for travelers, stating that these cause the travel and tourism industries to remain severely inhibited. IATA is promoting a layered approach of measures. They proposed a series of measures that would be in place instead of quarantine. They should reduce the possibility of spreading the infection and limit the travel of potentially infected persons. On the other hand, they would enable a gradual recovery of the economy.
The IATA is promoting three different layers of risk reduction when it attains to stopping infected travelers from spreading the virus upon arrival into the destinated country.
Decreasing the risk of importing disease with discouraging symptomatic passengers from traveling. Airlines are helping make this possible by offering travelers flexibility when booking so that they don’t get penalized.
Secondly, IATA is pushing local mitigation for public health risks. Contactless electronic declarations are recommended, and temperature checks at the airport. And finally, for passengers arriving from countries regarded to be higher risk, IATA promotes considering Covid-19 testing prior to arrival at the departure airport.
In addition, IATA is also promoting the “Take-Off” guidelines published by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO). These include mask-wearing throughout the travel process, sanitization, health declarations, and social distancing where possible.
Measures mitigating risk in cases where an infected person does travel has also been proposed. When a traveler is identified as being COVID-19 positive, the isolation of those that came into contact with the infected traveler should happen immediately. Effective contact tracing should be a good back-up measure. New mobile technology has the potential to automate part of the contact-tracing process.
Mandatory quarantine policies for passengers stop people from traveling. A recent poll of public opinions found that 83% of people would not even consider the idea of traveling if a mandatory quarantine was in place upon their arrival. “Safely restarting the economy is a priority,” said de Juniac. “That includes travel and tourism. Quarantine measures may play a role in keeping people safe, but they will also keep many unemployed. The alternative is to reduce risks through a series of measures.”
There is no doubt that the issue of restarting the economy is as important as preventing the spread of the virus. The governments must be protecting their citizens from the terrifying risks of both the virus and joblessness.
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