One of the key messages the Biden administration is trying to convey to Americans at this stage of the coronavirus pandemic is that not enough people have been vaccinated, nor have enough people gotten their COVID booster shots yet. However, a much stricter and controversial set of new COVID rules related to international travel — which Biden officials are reportedly set to announce as soon as Wednesday — could end up muddying that message and making an already tenuous vaccine uptake picture in this country much more complicated than it needs to be.
Consider, for example, what kind of message it sends about the effectiveness of vaccines. If, that is, you’re going to also mandate that fully vaccinated travelers who are either coming to or returning home to the US must ALSO present multiple negative COVID tests. And that they must also self-quarantine for seven days after they return. According to The Washington Post, all of that is where the administration seems to be leaning.
Controversial new international travel rules coming
Here’s a quick summary of what the administration is likely to unveil. As well as what might also be announced.
The Post dropped a bit of a bombshell report Tuesday night that suggested the Biden White House is about to pursue a number of changes in its overall COVID response. First and foremost, the plan is to shorten the window of time in which a traveler coming to the US, including a US citizen, can get a negative COVID result. Under the new framework? A traveler would have to obtain a COVID test and get a negative result just one day before they fly home.
The ability to get that done in 24 hours, as you might imagine, is not at all guaranteed for travelers. And it gets a whole lot more complicated from there.
For starters, that stricter COVID test rule also applies to vaccinated travelers. In short, everyone.
Raise your hand if remember CDC director Dr. Rochelle Walensky triumphantly declaring earlier this year that vaccinated people can finally ditch their masks, even around unvaccinated people? Because the vaccines are so good? And we wonder why people are ultimately tuning out all the maddening flip-flops, reversals, and conflicting messaging. Before any of you start harumphing about “following the science,” by the way, here’s another example of what I’m talking about…Read more>>