Arrivals from High-Risk Countries to be Tested at Ben Gurion

Travelers wear a face mask for fear of the coronavirus at airport. (Noam Revkin Fenton/Flash90)

The Defense Ministry announced a new precautionary measure on Wednesday evening: Anyone returning to Israel from the United States, Italy, France or Spain will have to be tested for the coronavirus immediately upon landing at Ben Gurion Airport.

The four countries were singled out due to their especially high incidence of the disease, the Defense Ministry explained.

Beginning Motzei Shabbos, all those returning from those countries will be sent to a Defense Ministry-run quarantine facility for two weeks.

Those who tests come back negative will be released to complete their 14-day quarantine at home. If the results are positive, authorities will then decide how to handle each case depending upon the severity of the symptoms.

Israelis returning home from other countries will only be required to enter home-quarantine.

The Defense Ministry says this effort will cost an estimated NIS 55 million.