MANILA (UPDATE) - Health authorities in Taiwan said all travelers arriving from the Philippines will be quarantined starting Wednesday, August 12 after announcing that the country's two new COVID-19 cases recently traveled to the Philippines.
The couple, a male and female who are both over 60 years old, returned to Taiwan last Aug. 6 from the Philippines where they worked for several months, according to Taiwan's Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC). They departed Taiwan in February and March, respectively, it said.
The man developed a fever, runny nose, and fatigue on July 23, while the woman experienced an itchy throat and cough on August 3, the CECC said.
"Their symptoms were relieved after taking medications, but they didn’t seek medical attention in the Philippines," it said.
The couple voluntarily reported their suspected symptoms upon entering Taiwan, underwent confirmatory test and were placed under quarantine, it added.
Their laboratory results were released Saturday, nearly 2 weeks after Taiwan reported 4 of its COVID-19 cases also had travel history to the Philippines.
Due to these developments, Taiwan's CECC announced all travelers arriving from the Philippines will be quarantined starting Wednesday, August 12.
According to a report from Focus Taiwan (CNA), the new regulation will apply to all Taiwanese citizens, resident permit holders, migrant workers, international students and diplomatic officials.
The mandatory quarantine period will last for 14 days and will cost NT$1,500 per day. The government, however, will cover the cost for Taiwanese citizens and resident permit holders.
All arrivals from the Philippines have been subject to mandatory testing since July 26th.
From July 26 to Aug. 8, five percent of all arrivals from the Philippines tested positive of COVID-19, compared to 0.03 percent from other parts of the world, Health Minister Chen Shih-chung said.
Taiwan so far has 479 confirmed COVID-19 cases, of which, 387 are imported, the CECC said.
The Philippines, meanwhile, has 129,913 confirmed coronavirus infections, as of Sunday, of which, 59,970 are active.