Bali tightens border controls amid reports rising COVID-19 cases in Southeast Asia

Photo: Ministry of Tourism and Creative Economy.
Photo: Ministry of Tourism and Creative Economy.

The Bali Port Health Office has reportedly implemented stricter border controls at three key entry points: Benoa Port, Celuk Bawang, and I Gusti Ngurah Rai International Airport amid reports of rising numbers of COVID-19 cases in several Southeast Asian countries.

The Head of the Denpasar Office of the Bali Port Health Office, Anak Agung Ngurah Kusumajaya, explained that while health protocols are not yet fully enforced, the agency is encouraging travelers who are feeling unwell or experiencing flu-like symptoms to wear masks.

“We have not yet implemented the health protocols. But if someone is sick or feeling unwell, we recommend that they wear a mask,” he said yesterday.

As part of the tightened controls, the office has deployed staff at all three entry points, equipped with body temperature scanners. Additionally, 300 free doses of COVID-19 vaccines are being offered to travelers and immigration officials, with Kusumajaya urging everyone to “get fully vaccinated and boosted for optimal protection.”

Four body temperature scanners are also operational at the airport, three of which are strategically positioned in the international arrivals terminal. 

Should a tourist or foreign national test positive for COVID-19 upon arrival, they will be immediately quarantined in a designated health facility or referral hospital in Bali. This protocol aligns with the recent circular issued by the Ministry of Health, which warns of the potential spread of COVID-19 by foreign tourists from ASEAN countries.

The same circular also calls on travelers to get fully vaccinated before going abroad.

“There have been no confirmed cases of COVID-19. However, we urge everyone to remain cautious and aware of the situation. Passengers with symptoms will be handled according to established procedures. Cruise ship passengers who test positive will be quarantined on board and not allowed to disembark,” he said.

Kusumajaya encouraged all Balinese residents to prioritize their health and well-being, emphasizing the importance of maintaining a strong immune system. He reminds everyone that the early symptoms of COVID-19 remain unchanged: fever, sore throat, cough, and fatigue.


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