VIENTIANE, June 18 (Xinhua) -- Everyone entering Laos must comply with all of the standard COVID-19 prevention and control measures, even if they have had two doses of a COVID-19 vaccine, Lao health authorities said Friday.
Vaccinated travelers still need to spend 14 days in quarantine upon arrival in Laos, local daily Vientiane Times on Friday quoted Director General of the Department of Hygiene and Health Promotion under the Lao Ministry of Health, Phonepaseuth Ounaphome, as saying.
"We have not introduced a special policy to shorten the quarantine period," Phonepaseuth said.
Lao authorities have asked the World Health Organization (WHO) in Laos to provide guidance in this regard, he added.
The WHO has not recommended any reduction in the quarantine period so Lao authorities are continuing to comply with WHO's current recommendations, he added.
However, people who had received two doses of a vaccine would benefit from a special policy on domestic travel, in line with the government's COVID-19 prevention and control measures.
Under these rules, passenger transport by air and road between Lao capital Vientiane and the provinces is only permitted for people who have had two vaccinations at least one month prior to travel. These individuals will also not need to spend 14 days in quarantine.
Phonepaseuth said the use of vaccination certificates would result in several benefits after the lockdown is lifted and that travel and other activities may require the presentation of vaccination certificates in order to be approved.
Lao authorities are now speeding up the vaccination program, hoping to immunize 50 percent of the population by the end of 2021.
As of Friday, the total number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Laos is 2,047 with three deaths.
A total of 1,931 COVID-19 patients have recovered and been discharged from hospitals.
Laos reported its first two confirmed cases of COVID-19 on March 24 last year. Enditem