Israel’s Corona Cabinet decided Tuesday night to approve the Health Ministry’s recommendation to shorten the quarantine period for people testing positive for Covid-19 from 14 days to seven .
According to the new plan, those who require quarantine — following either exposure to a COVID patient or return from abroad — will be able to exit after seven days following a negative PCR test. The decision came even though some 745 new COVID-19 cases were registered in the previous day, marking the highest number since March. Officials explained, however, that as the number of serious cases remained stable, it would be safe to relax some restrictions.
Along with the shortening of the quarantine period, the ministers voted to increase the informational campaign to persuade Israelis to get vaccinated, to speed up the testing process so as to get results to people on a more timely basis, and to more strictly enforce the regulations. To that end, enforcement responsibility has been transferred to the Ministry of Interior Security. Fines of up to 5,000 shekels will be imposed on violators.
Directives concerning the wearing of masks at indoor venues where over 100 people are gathered will be detailed as they are finalized.
At the Corona Cabinet meeting on Tuesday night, Prime Minister Naftali Bennett stressed the importance of focusing on how to open the economy as opposed to how to close it, to give the public sufficient advance notice of new measures to allow time for adjustment and increase trust, and to work closely with businesses.
Regarding the reopening of the country’s borders to foreign travelers, Tourism Minister Yoel Razvozov is expected to present a comprehensive plan to the Cabinet. The target date to allow individual tourists in who have been vaccinated and tested for Covid is said to be August 1, but it will depend on the Covid case rate in the coming days.
According to Israeli media, the Health Ministry also recommended bringing back the green pass for entering any indoor event or venue with more than 100 people, including restaurants, theaters, synagogues and weddings. No decision on that was reported.
Updated Tuesday, July 13, 2021 at 5:14 pm .