Coronavirus test has become a requirement for anyone who wants to visit the District of Columbia from the states that are designated as “high risk” areas for coronavirus, as per a new travel advisory issued by DC Mayor Muriel Bowser.
Travelers must get tested 72 hours ahead of their planned visit. They are asked to cancel their visit if they test positive or if they are a close contact of a confirmed positive case.
In addition, anyone who is a visitor to DC for longer than three days has to get tested within three to five days of arrival.
The DC Department of Health updated the city’s coronavirus high-risk states list on Monday, November 2, bringing the number of states that require quarantine upon arrival from to 42. (California, New Jersey and Oregon have been added to the previous list.)
“With increased cases of COVID-19 around the country, travel should be restricted as much as possible,” Bowser said during a press conference. “That said, we want people to be safe and smart if they do travel.”
Visitors from Maryland and Virginia will be exempted from the test requirement, as well as those coming into the District for less than 24 hours.
1/ If you missed today's situational update, here are some key highlights.
— Mayor Muriel Bowser (@MayorBowser) November 5, 2020
Bowser stated that the new restrictions will go into effect Monday with a new mayor’s order.
According to the advisory, private institutions such as universities, employers, hotels, hospitals, congregate care facilities, and houses of worship may ask visitors about their recent travel and may require a record of a negative COVID-19 test before admitting them.
Individuals arriving in DC for essential work “may carry out those duties prior to receiving the results of their second test in DC (as long as they do not have symptoms or were not a close contact of a positive case within the past 14 days).”
If you are traveling to DC for a family emergency or a funeral, it is not mandatory for you to get a negative test before your arrival, if it would be impractical, but your activities must be limited to the emergency in question.
As for DC residents returning home after traveling to anywhere other than Maryland, Virginia, or a low-risk state or country must either:
- Limit daily activities and self-monitor for 14 days upon their return.
- Limit daily activities until they get tested for COVID-19 (approximately 72 hours after their return) and receive a negative result.
The states that have a seven-day moving average of daily new coronavirus cases of 10 or more per 100,000 persons are regarded as “high-risk” areas in terms of the spread of coronavirus, according to DC Department of Health.