Health Alert – U.S. Embassy Bangkok, Thailand (March 21, 2020)

Health Alert – U.S. Embassy Bangkok, Thailand (March 21, 2020)
Location:  Thailand
Event: The Royal Thai Government (RTG) has implemented enhanced screening and quarantine measures to reduce the spread of COVID-19.  Travelers should be prepared for travel restrictions to be put into effect with little or no advance notice.  U.S. citizens who are considering returning to the United States are urged to work with their airlines to make travel arrangements while flights are still available. On March 13, 2020, the RTG’s Ministry of Public Health added the United States to its list of countries with ongoing local transmission. Travelers entering the Kingdom of Thailand who have been in the United States within the prior 14 days are subject to self-monitoring and reporting requirements upon arrival.

Effective as of 12:01 am, Sunday March 22, The Thai government now also requires such travelers to have a health certificate issued within 72 hours before arrival in Thailand certifying that they are “free of coronavirus,” as well as proof of medical insurance with at least $100,000 of overseas coverage.  The health certificate must certify the traveler has displayed no evidence of acute respiratory infection in the 48 hours prior to departure from the U.S.  The self-monitoring and reporting requirements upon arrival in Thailand remain, even with the health certificate and health insurance.  All U.S. Citizens must prepare themselves to produce these two documents if they wish to be allowed to arrive in Thailand after 12:01 am, Sunday March 22.  U.S. Embassies and Consulates will not be in a position to assist with regard to these documents.

All travelers arriving in Thailand will also be required to download the AOT Airports Application.  Once the app is downloaded, travelers must fill in the required information in the COVID-19 Inbound Passenger Control Section and present this to immigration officials at all international airports. The language of the RTG Ministry of Health requirements is available on its website.  Visit the Ministry of Public Health website for additional information on these new measures.

Many travelers worldwide have reported unexpected flight cancellations and limited flight availability.  If your travel has been disrupted, please contact your airline.  Please check with your airline or tour operator regarding any additional requirements to board, as individual companies may have their own requirements.

The Department of State has issues a Global Level 4 Health Advisory – Do Not Travel.  U.S. citizens normally resident in the U.S. but currently outside the U.S,, i.e. tourists and other short-term travelers, should return while there are still transportation options available.  U.S. citizens normally resident overseas should avoid international travel.  The Travel Advisory does not constitute a “recall” of all U.S. citizens to the United States.

On March 14, the Department of State authorized the departure from any diplomatic or consular post in the world of US personnel and family members who have been medically determined to be at higher risk of a poor outcome if exposed to COVID-19.

The U.S. Embassy in Bangkok has recommended that all U.S. government employees in Thailand avoid mass transportation (including the BTS and MRT rail systems in Bangkok, buses, and domestic airline flights) and entertainment venues, and use personal vehicles for transportation domestically.   U.S. government employees are also encouraged to avoid gatherings of more than 10 people, and to practice social distancing.

Actions to Take: