Taiwan suffered an outbreak of Covid-19 and implemented a level 3 alert. During this time, the government executed strict control over social activities.
After more than two years of coexisting with the virus, the government has now turned to a stance of “living with the virus” rather than instituting a “zero-Covid” policy despite the hard hit of the Omicron variant in early April.
One of the most notable policy changes is the policy related to quarantine. Quarantine requirements are now shorter, including the mandatory quarantine for all international arrivals that was shortened from three days to seven days this past June.
Shortened quarantine requirements aside, the mask policy remains. At present, the Taiwan Center for Disease Control, has listed a number of exceptions to the mask requirement including exercising outdoors, taking photos indoors and outdoors, live streaming, filming, moderating an event, reporting, delivering remarks, giving a speech, lecturing, or during activities or events involving conversations with others.
Nevertheless, the government has three doses of a Covid vaccine for specific categories of people in order to reduce the rate of death or serious illness and move toward coexistence with the virus. As a result, the Government has implemented a tightened vaccination policy on April 22, 2022, after the outbreak of the Omicron variant, which requested the following groups of people be given three doses of a Covid vaccination:
- Medical or health personnel, central or local government epidemic prevention affiliated personnel, high-risk front line personnel, and security and social function affiliated personnel (collectively, people in the first, second, third and seventh vaccination priority groups under the government-funded Covid vaccination program)
- Individuals working in correctional institutions, funeral homes, and in 24 types of venues/workplaces under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Education, the Ministry of Economic Affairs, Ministry of Labor, and the Ministry of Health and Welfare
- People who frequently come into contact with nonspecific persons or cannot maintain social distancing, including those participating in religious events (processions and pilgrimages) and group tours as well as individuals going to the gym or adult entertainment venues, and are old enough/eligible for Covid vaccination (both staff and visitors).
Said groups of people are required to receive a Covid booster shot (third dose) in principle, unless being evaluated by a doctor and determined to be unsuitable for the vaccination. Individuals that cannot receive a vaccination with a legitimate reason shall take a rapid test or PCR test once a week (with a negative result) before providing service or entering said venues.
This year, the epidemic-related policies have varied rapidly. These changes in policy are closely related to our lives and deserve our continuous attention and cooperation.