US set to lift restrictions on COVID test proof for International travels
Air travellers to United States will no longer be required to present proof of a negative COVID test before entering the country.
According to CNN, the change will take effect at 12 a.m. on Sunday for US-bound passengers.
According to CNN the US government's Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is lifting the ban after concluding that it is no longer necessary "based on research and statistics."
“The Covid-19 pandemic has now shifted to a new phase, due to the widespread uptake of highly effective Covid-19 vaccines, the availability of effective therapeutics, and the accrual of high rates of vaccine- and infection-induced immunity at the population level in the United States,” the CDC reportedly said in a statement to CNN.
“Each of these measures has contributed to lower risk of severe disease and death across the United States.”
The US travel industry had repeatedly advocated the lifting of the test requirement, arguing that it was affecting the country’s economy.
The CDC will reportedly reassess the policy in 90 days.
The official also said the government would not hesitate to reinstate the rule if new variants make it necessary.
The US introduced the measure requiring air travellers to test negative within three days of their flight in January 2021.
However, in December, the Biden administration tightened the policy to within one day of flying as the Omicron variant increased COVID cases.
The number of COVID cases in the US has been on a decline, with the country slowly easing the restrictions put in place.
In April, US airlines dropped the requirement that passengers and employees wear masks on planes after a court voided the CDC’s mandate.
The move came after a federal judge in Florida ruled that the directive was unlawful.
As of June 10, a total of 87,114,740 COVID cases have been reported in the US and out of that figure, 3,144,178 are active cases.