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Home Affairs Committee to examine international approaches to Covid-19 quarantine strategy

10 March 2021

The Home Affairs Committee examines what lessons can be learnt from border and quarantine measures in other countries on Wednesday 10 March in an evidence session as part of its inquiry into Home Office preparations for covid-19.

Purpose of the session

The Committee will question health and security officials from South Korea and Australia on their current quarantine strategies. It will then question representatives of Heathrow, UK Hospitality and Sitel about the UK’s quarantine model and options for managing risk in the long-term as wider restrictions are eased.

From February, individuals entering the UK who have been in one of 33 ‘red list’ countries are required to enter hotel quarantine. Both Australia and South Korea have operated a system of hotel quarantine for people entering their countries since March 2020. Australia requires all entrants to quarantine in a hotel for 14 days, whereas South Korea allows home quarantine for domestic nationals if they have private transport.

The session will examine the factors driving the development of the different approaches and the impact they have had on attempts to mitigate the spread of the covid-19 virus. This is likely to include questions concerning the use of Government managed facilities and home quarantine, approaches to testing, and enforcement of quarantine rules. The session will also consider options for quarantine regulations in the longer term as domestic restrictions are reduced, in particular for the coming summer where the number of overseas travellers is expected to increase.

Witnesses

Wednesday 10 March

At 9.30am

Panel 1

  • Dr Hugh Heggie, Chief Health Officer, Northern Territory, Australia
  • Lee Wook-Gyo, Quarantine facility management team leader, Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency
  • Kim Geum-Cha, Director, Quarantine policy division,  Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency
  • Ms Susan Pearce, Deputy Secretary for Patient Experience and System Performance, Ministry of Health, New South Wales
  • DC Gary Worboys, Deputy Commissioner of Police, New South Wales

Panel 2

  • Ian Conduit, Director, Business Development, Sitel UK
  • Emma Gilthorpe, Chief Operating Officer, Heathrow
  • Kate Nicholls, CEO, UK Hospitality

Further information

Image: Crown Copyright