No exemption from 7 day quarantine for travelers from high risk areas

During the COVID-19 press brief  the Health Minister responded to a query made by truckers, bolero and taxi drivers about if they would  be exempted from being quarantined and if they could be let through from high risk areas with just the test. Lyonpo said that it is a move not possible as these people are different in comparison to house wives or other less frequent commuters.

Lyonpo added, “When we did the risk profiling these group of people were categorized as high risk group.”

Lyonpo said that the only exception in the ministry’s view is for the ill or in case of demise of relative then they would be exempted from following the 7 day quarantine process. Lyonpo said that bolero drivers are frequently on the move and in case of taxi drivers they have contact with a lot of people. Lyonpo said that even when the vaccines arrive these groups are categorized to be immunized prior to the general population. Lyonpo clarified that in some cases as per the Road Transport and Security Authority’s (RSTA) guidelines, if the drivers did not have any contact at all, they would be allowed to move back.

However, the Minister stated that there are concerns as even the slightest complacency like in sharing doma, or cigarettes or even walking to toilet together could prove risky.

Similarly acknowledging the domestic tourism and sporting activities in high risk areas, Lyonpo stated that for the former people they have to travel responsibly and for the latter follow the Bhutan Olympic Committee (BOC) guidelines and Standard Operating Procedure (SoP).

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