CDC drops COVID-19 health notices for travelers for individual countries

WASHINGTON– The federal government is scrapping another of its responses to the pandemic.

On Monday, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention dropped their country-specific COVID-19 travel health notices they issued at the beginning of the pandemic.

The reason: fewer countries are testing for the virus or reporting the number of COVID-19 cases. This limits the CDC’s ability to calculate traveler risk, the agency said.

CDC spokeswoman Kristen Nordlund said the agency will only issue a travel health advisory for an individual country if a situation, such as a worrying new variant of the virus, changes the CDC travel advice for that country.

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The CDC continues to encourage travelers to keep up to date on vaccines and follow the recommendations on their international travel page.

This page divides countries into three categories – take usual precautions, take extended precautions or avoid unnecessary travel.

Restrictions like testing and quarantine requirements severely slowed international travel early in the pandemic, but many countries eventually lifted those rules for fully vaccinated people, encouraging people to increase tourism.

In early 2020, before vaccines were available, the United States placed a lockdown on people who had recently been to one of more than three dozen countries. In 2021, the US instead began requiring people to test negative for COVID-19 just before boarding planes bound for the US. This rule was eventually dropped as well.

Copyright © 2022 by The Associated Press. All rights reserved. CDC drops COVID-19 health notices for travelers for individual countries

Russell Falcon

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