Proposal to end PCR testing for visitors coming into South Africa

Health Department assessing proposal to end PCR testing for visitors coming into SA

The Health Department is dealing with a proposal to end the testing requirements for visitors coming into the country. 

PCR test and passport
PCR test and passport / iStock

The world is still dealing with the coronavirus pandemic, which first hit in 2020. 

The virus, which spreads quickly, especially through people who are in close contact with each other, has led to many changes being made in the tourism sector.

Many countries have strict regulations before welcoming visitors into their country. 

Apart from a negative PCR test, some countries require vaccination and a quarantine period.

A report by Business Insider states that tourists coming into South Africa might no longer need to undergo PCR testing if the proposal made to the Health Department succeeds. 

READ: Covid-19 positivity rate drops even further

As the current regulations state, those coming into South Africa need to present a negative PCR test result not older than 72 hours from the time of departure.

However, there is a proposal to have this law scrapped. 

The Department of Health told the publication that it had received proposals to scrap testing for fully-vaccinated travellers. Another proposal is to include rapid antigen tests as an option.

The department said it is still processing the proposal and they will need to go through the National Coronavirus Command Council (NCCC).

“Some are proposing that we accept the antigen test [and] these are proposals that we are still processing,” spokesperson Foster Mohale told Business Insider SA.

He added that if the NCCC endorses the proposal, then an announcement will be made. 

“But as of now, the status quo remains. There are no changes,” said Mohale. 

READ: Covid-19 reinfection risk much greater with Omicron, warns Phaahla

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Image courtesy of iStock/ @scaliger

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