The Minister for Health, Stephen Donnelly, has announced the removal of all remaining States from the list of States designated for the purposes of Mandatory Hotel Quarantine (MHQ) with effect from today, Saturday 25 September 2021.
This decision is based on the latest advice received from the Chief Medical Officer.
The Mandatory Hotel Quarantine system has been scaled down progressively over recent months as the designation of a large number of states has been revoked.
These revocations have been in line with the government’s revised approach to international travel, the success of Ireland’s vaccine roll-out and the evolution of the pandemic internationally.
Notwithstanding the scaling down of the Mandatory Hotel Quarantine system, travelers must still abide by the relevant travel regulations as set out in the Travel to the State Regulations (SI 135 of 2021).
These include the need to:
have a pre-travel RT-PCR test
unless you have possession of proof of vaccination or recovery
fill out a Passenger Locator Form prior to your arrival arrival to Ireland
The Health (Amendment) Act 2021 completed its passage through the Oireachtas on 1 March 2021 and was signed into law by the President on Friday 7 March. This gave effect to a government decision to establish a system of mandatory hotel quarantine as another necessary public health measure to protect the population from COVID-19.
Mandatory Hotel Quarantine commenced operation on 26 March 2021. Since that time, over 10,000 people have completed Mandatory Hotel Quarantine.
Minister Donnelly said:
"The Mandatory Hotel Quarantine system was introduced as an exceptional public health measure at a time that our country was contending with the very serious risk of importation of variants of concern that had the potential to overwhelm our health service and, in particular, to undermine Ireland’s COVID-19 Vaccination Programme.
"The logistics involved with the implementation of this system were many and complex. The policy was led by officials in my own department with significant support and input from officials across a number of departments and State bodies. I would like to take this opportunity to sincerely thank all of those who worked diligently to ensure the system operated smoothly and provided an appropriate level of care to those completing their period of quarantine.
"At the peak of the system’s operation some 60 states were designated and the greatest number of persons in MHQ at one time reached 1,008 on 9 May 2021. The successful operation of Mandatory Hotel Quarantine has played a central role in protecting the population, maintaining control of the disease and enabling the safe relaxation of restrictions on our economy and society.
"Finally, I would like to thank the over 10,000 people who completed their period of quarantine in a designated facility and the many thousands more who completed home quarantine in order to protect themselves and their loved ones from the risk of severe illness and death from COVID-19."
Ireland’s Mandatory Hotel Quarantine system in numbers
10,294 people entered Mandatory Hotel Quarantine
8 hotels were used at peak
593 residents tested positive for COVID-19
664 tests were carried out on residents were positive. (Due to the duration of stay, a person may test positive more than once)
of the 664 positive tests, 42 were on people from a non-designated State, and 622 were on people from a designated State
total number of appeals: 3,426. Of these, 526 (15.35%) were granted