26 June 2020
The Australian Health Protection Principal Committee (AHPPC) considered the current quarantine arrangements for international travellers.
Since 28 March, Australia has required all incoming travellers to undertake 14 days quarantine in a hotel. AHPPC notes that this measure has been a key part of Australia’s successful response to COVID-19.
AHPPC recommends that all international travellers must continue to quarantine for 14 days after entry into Australia. The risk of COVID-19 in travellers returning from many countries is increasing, reinforcing the importance of quarantine as a protection measure. On the advice of the Communicable Diseases Network Australia (CDNA), AHPPC considered two options:
- Reducing the time of quarantine in a hotel for international travellers. This includes most spending part of the time in home quarantine; or
- Continuing the current model of 14 day quarantine in a hotel.
AHPPC considered that there is not enough data to justify reducing the current need for hotel quarantine. AHPPC recommends that all international travellers continue to undertake 14 days quarantine in a supervised hotel.
Based on available data, AHPPC recommends that jurisdictions improve testing arrangements during hotel quarantine. States and Territories will arrange to test people in hotel quarantine for COVID-19. They will do this in the first 48 hours and then on day 10-12 of hotel quarantine. Exact arrangements will depend on states and territories.
AHPPC acknowledges that hotel quarantine may not be sustainable in the long term and will explore alternative models in the future.