The Bailiwick has achieved consistent, sustained control of the virus that causes Covid-19, but it remains vulnerable to re-introduction - particularly while surrounding jurisdictions are experiencing high prevalence rates of infection.
Testing programmes for travellers have been developed to mitigate the risk of reintroduction of Covid-19 with dual aims of detecting more infections in travellers before they can be spread to the community and achieving early detection of any escaped cases or clusters which can be targeted with the test, trace, isolate processes to interrupt any ongoing transmission and snuff out outbreaks before they lead to widespread community transmission.
At today's press conference, the panel, which included the new head of Health & Social Care Deputy Al Brouard for the first time, announced a pilot scheme offering testing on day 13 to those travellers self-isolating where capacity allows.
This is to help find and extinguish any 'missed' infections and stop the virus taking hold in the islands by detecting late-presenting infections. It is in line with ECDC guidance.
Those offered a day 13 test will be called by the scheduling team to arrange a test at the Princess Elizabeth Hospital or the Mignot Memorial Hospital in Alderney.
Do not call the team to arrange this yourself.
The pilot will cover the period of time when the majority of students will be returning to the Bailiwick.
A negative test on day 13 will be reassuring to them, their families and the community.
It was explained at the conference that testing on day 13 will allow those on the scheme who receive a negative day 13 test result to leave self-isolation immediately, though those tested as part of a family or group will have to wait for each member to receive a negative test result.
Also on the agenda for the press conference is an update on the Covid vaccination programme, advice for returning students and a word about the suspended air bridge with the Isle of Man.
More information can be found on the travel link below, and further information and conditions of participation will be provided to those who take part.
While there is benefit to travellers of taking a day 13 test, it presents a significant benefit to the community by picking up late presenting infections before the end of the 14 day self-isolation period.