Malacañang said that the new testing and quarantine protocols that the government's pandemic task force has set for travelers coming from "green" and "yellow" countries will apply retroactively to travelers who may have arrived in the Philippines before the policy took effect.
Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles made the statement after the Inter-agency Task Force (IATF) for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases allowed fully vaccinated travelers from green list countries to skip a facility-based quarantine if they have a negative RT-PCR test taken within 48 hours prior to their flight to the Philippines.
In a statement, Nograles said the IATF has directed implementing agencies to ensure the smooth and proper implementation of these protocols intended to screen Filipinos and foreign nationals entering the country from abroad.
In a resolution issued by the IATF on Saturday, January 15, testing and quarantine protocols for green and yellow List countries/territories/jurisdictions per IATF Resolution No. 157 shall now apply to those who arrived in all ports of entry in the Philippines on or before January 13, 2022.
The IATF likewise clarified that foreign nationals coming from red list countries and allowed admission in the country under existing IATF rules may enter the Philippines provided they have valid or existing visas. Their entry is subject to Philippine immigration laws, rules and regulations.
The following are under the country's red list from January 16 to 31, 2022:
- Antigua and Barbuda
- French Guiana
- Puerto Rico
- Saudi Arabia
- US Virgin Islands
Meanwhile, there are 32 countries and territories under the Philippines' green list from January 16 until the end of the month.
Under the new protocols, fully vaccinated Filipinos coming from red list countries may now enter the country without the need of a Bayanihan flight or a government or nongovernment initiated repatriation flight. However, they are required to produce a negative RT-PCR test taken within 48 hours before their travel. They must also undergo facility-based quarantine and have another RT-PCR test on the seventh day.
Unvaccinated, partially vaccinated, and those whose vaccination status cannot be verified will have to undergo the same process but will only be discharged after completing the 10-day facility-based quarantine.