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Testing trial loosens border lockdown

Testing trial loosens border lockdown

Friday 29 May 2020

Testing trial loosens border lockdown


Jersey is taking another step towards opening its borders from Monday, with the launch of a new trial offering incoming air passengers the possibility of only isolating for 2 days, if they test negative for covid-19.

The trial will offered to passengers on the 'lifeline' Blue Islands service to / from Southampton & Gatwick.

The trial does not alter the existing restrictions on travel to and from Jersey, with anyone wanting to get on a Blue Islands' flight still needing special authorisation from the Customs and Immigration Service before booking, which will only be granted if they meet the criteria for "essential" travel. They have to complete a health declaration and provide additional information to identify the purpose for travel, such as essential worker status or for medical, repatriation or compassionate reasons.

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Pictured: Air passengers with a negative test result can leave isolation after 48 hours. 

During the trial, passengers will have the option of taking a swab (PCR) test to see if they currently have the virus - they will then need to isolate for 48 hours while the test result comes back.

If it's negative they will be allowed to leave isolation. If positive, then they have to stay in 'quarantine' for 14 days.

Those testing negative on arrival, will be re-tested for covid-19 again on subsequent days while they remain in Jersey, and if they test positive at any stage, they will have to isolate. 

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Pictured: the PCR testing for air passengers will be returned in 48 hours. 

The next stage in the testing programme will be a finger-prick blood test (a serology test), to be taken on the fourth day after arriving in Jersey. Passengers may then be required to take up two additional PCR tests on the fourth and seventh days after arriving. 

Any passengers who choose not to take part in the trial, will have to isolate for the 14 days on arrival. 

As well as the Southampton flights with Blue Islands there is a weekly return flight between Jersey and London Gatwick.

The service is also operated by Blue Islands as part of its agreement with the Government of Jersey to maintain vital travel between Jersey and the mainland, with a single journey costing a flat fee of £100. The Government is providing funding of £5,263 per return flight service (rotation) to secure the link.

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